Licensing and authorisation requirements

Some changes concerning the licence granted to a bank, securities firm or branch of a foreign bank or securities firm are subject to prior licensing or authorisation requirements.

The most important changes requiring a licence or authorisation from FINMA are as follows:

  • Changes to articles of association and business rules must be authorised by FINMA before they enter into force.
  • Changes to the persons responsible for administration and management (changes in ultimate management) must be authorised by FINMA before operations can be resumed.
  • If a Swiss bank is to be transferred to foreign control, it needs an additional licence. The same applies to Swiss-controlled securities firms and changes to qualified participations in foreign-controlled institutions.
  • Banks and account-holding securities firms that use individual risk models to calculate capital adequacy requirements must have these authorised by FINMA.
  • Systemically important banks require FINMA’s authorisation to include certain capital instruments in their capital adequacy calculations.