Swiss banking secrecy was never there to help the Jews

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The Guardian perpetuated a popular and entirely incorrect myth about Swiss banking secrecy today. It said this secrecy was introduced in 1934 to protect German Jews. That is completely untrue. There was very little international concern for German Jews in 1934 anywhere, let alone Switzerland. It was actually created to prevent enquiries being made by French tax authorities about senior members of French political and social life who were using Switzerland for the purposes of tax evasion.

There was never a social or ethical justification for bank secrecy: it is simply a mechanism to facilitate tax evasion, financial fraud and corruption on a world wide-scale.

The abolition of banking secrecy is one of the necessary reforms required to create a banking system suitable for the 21st century.