In Switzerland, the federal tax administration levies a so-called “stamp duty” on certain financial services. This is a form of turnover tax, and is sometimes referred to as such. It is also commonly referred to as stamp tax.
This tax primarily affects securities trading. Another form of stamp duty is also levied on insurance transactions.
Stamp taxes in securities trading
Swiss stamp duties are levied on each purchase and sale of shares, bonds, structured products, investment funds, ETFs and other securities.
The stamp duty is automatically deducted by your bank or broker. The amount of stamp duty you pay depends on whether you trade on a Swiss stock exchange or a foreign stock exchange. Stamp duties are given as a percentage of share value.
Stamp duties on Swiss shares (Swiss ISIN): 0.075%
Stamp duties on foreign shares (non-Swiss ISIN): 0.15%
As you can see, stamp duties are substantially higher than the fees charged by stock exchanges both in Switzerland and abroad, but are still markedly lower than brokerage fees.
Stamp duties for Swiss insurers
Swiss insurance companies are subject to a stamp duty equal to 5% of insurance premiums. Insurance policies affected by this tax include those dealing with liability insurance, car insurance, travel insurance and pet insurance, among others.
Trading in Switzerland