The proposed amendments to the Banking Act (BankA) and Banking Ordinance (BankO) aim to regulate fintech and other firms which provide services outside normal banking business according to their risk potential.
A form of deregulation with three supplementary elements is being proposed:
First, the exception provided for in the Banking Ordinance for the acceptance of funds for settlement purposes should apply explicitly for settlements within 60 days (instead of only for settlements within seven days as was the practice up to now). For securities dealers, what should remain crucial is that the planned main transaction is organised and directly foreseeable. This change requires an amendment to the BankO.
Furthermore, an innovation area should be created: the acceptance of public funds up to CHF 1 million should not be classified as operating on a commercial basis and can be exempt from authorisation. This change should allow firms to try out a business model before they are finally required to obtain authorisation in the case of public funds of over CHF 1 million. This change also requires an amendment to the BankO.
Finally, there should be simplified authorisation and operating requirements relative to the current banking licence in the areas of accounting, auditing and deposit protection for companies that accept public funds of up to a maximum of CHF 100 million but do not operate in the lending business. This requires an amendment to the BankA. Less stringent requirements particularly in the areas of minimum capital, own funds and liquidity would have to be regulated within the scope of implementing regulations to be issued later.
During its meeting on 1 February 2017, the Federal Council initiated the consultation on amendments to the Banking Act and Banking Ordinance in the fintech area. The consultation lasted until 8 May 2017.