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IRS gets a key to Swiss bank accounts

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posted on Aug, 19 2009 @ 07:37 PM

IRS gets a key to Swiss bank accounts

Government reaches deal to access as many as 5,000 UBS accounts that U.S. investors might have used to avoid taxes.

NEW YORK ( -- The Internal Revenue Service announced Wednesday that it has reached a deal with the Swiss government, gaining access to thousands of UBS AG accounts that Americans might have used to avoid paying taxes.

"Thousands of taxpayers who avoided paying taxes in the past are being brought into compliance," said IRS Commissioner Douglas Shulman in a teleconference with reporters. "As this agreement demonstrates, the world of international taxes has dra
(visit the link for the full news article)

posted on Aug, 19 2009 @ 07:37 PM

An IRS press release stated that 4,450 accounts held by rich American investors were included in the settlement.

In the teleconference, Shulman said the IRS expects to gain access to a total of more than 5,000 UBS (UBS) accounts, through the IRS-UBS settlement, combined with a voluntary disclosure program and "other sources." He said these accounts have held $18 billion in assets at one time, though he did not have a current tally for their value.

A UBS spokeswoman would not comment on the value of the accounts and referred questions to a company press release. In the release, UBS Chairman Kaspar Villiger said the settlement "helps to resolve one of UBS' most pressing issues."

Just saw this and wanted to pass it along to you all. I will be looking forward to the outcome of this. Although, I doubt we, the people, will ever see these names. I'm actually surprised that the IRS has been granted access.

(visit the link for the full news article)

posted on Aug, 19 2009 @ 08:26 PM
It is about time the rich started to pay their fair share don't you think.

It couldn't have happened to a better bunch. LOL Now, I am with you, will the names be released. Of course if they are prosecuted we just may be able to find out. Let's hope.

posted on Aug, 19 2009 @ 08:34 PM
I've been following this story since the court case started around this time last year. Quite frankly I'm of the opinion that the US government should have given UBS 30 days to release all names of US citizens who have accounts at UBS or lost their US banking charter. This particular agreement only covers 4,500 accounts while UBS has something like 50,000+ US clients. I think anyone hit by this action deserves it for no other reason than they are making me side with the IRS on an issue. I've actually seen it posted that one of the reasons that the US is going soft on UBS is that they can't afford to see a bank the size of UBS fail in the current financial situtation. That's right a Foreign company that helps US citizens evade taxes is getting off easier because it is too big to fail.

Interestingly enough bloomberg and several other sources are reporting this tonight.

The Swiss government will divest from UBS with immediate effect, it said on its Web site. The government intends to exercise its right to convert all 6 billion Swiss francs of its holding of UBS Mandatory Convertible Notes due 2011 and to place with institutional investors the newly issued UBS shares received upon conversion.

From Bloomberg

There are some great articles about the UBS thing here on ATS, the net and Blogosphere.

Prior ATS Articles

[edit on 19-8-2009 by jefwane]

posted on Aug, 19 2009 @ 09:07 PM
Though I am a staunch proponent of unfettered capitalism and (extremely) minimal taxation, and don't have any problem with the concept of a "tax shelter," I can't help but side with the IRS here. I almost feel guilty about it.

Why would I support their exposure? Because I have a hunch that many of the tax evading US citizens on that list come from the so-called "limousine liberal" class (I suppose "Country Club Republican" would be the partisan equivalent). You know, the elites that are in favor of higher taxes—because they have a great financial adviser on speed dial who can always find a loophole.

Perhaps I will be proved wrong. Perhaps we'll never know who the high rollers were. But perhaps those who do get burned will finally realize that paying taxes like us little people hurts, and change their tune next time someone proposes a tax hike.

posted on Aug, 19 2009 @ 09:34 PM
What I find disturbing is that the Swiss banking establish is caving to the US government. They have never caved to any nation in the history of their financial institution and have remained neutral in all of the previous world conflicts. I am not condoning people that use tax shelters to evade while others have to pay. However, I find it disheartening that a foreign business is catering to United States through divulging the names of their account holders. The Swiss used to be the safest place to deposit money because of their neutral political leanings in world politics. However, maybe that reputations is beginning to change with this recent revelation.

posted on Aug, 19 2009 @ 09:50 PM
reply to post by Jakes51

I don't think the Swiss really had any choice. The US government could have (and probably should have) revoked UBS US banking charter and kicked them out of being a primary dealer for US treasury auctions. Not only would they lose access to the US customer market they would lose the ability to loot the US taxpayer via their position as a Primary Dealer and the funny stuff going on in bond auctions of late that is immensely profitable for PDs.

It will be interesting if this progresses further with investigations of Credit Suisse (also a PD).

I wonder how many politically powerful people are part of that initial 4500 names. I think i read somewhere that the average account in question was 1,000,000 with 4,500 accounts that's 4.5 billion in untaxed assets. At a 28% tax rate that is an uncollected 1.25 Billion without any fees or fines.

Anyway Switzerland seems (and really has been for a while now) less secret than what one would expect.

Next they should go after the Carribean banking centers that fulfill the same purpose as a Swiss bank account.

posted on Aug, 20 2009 @ 08:31 AM
Switzerland sold its stake in its largest bank, UBS, for 5.5 billion Swiss francs ($5.1 billion)

Swiss authorities said the sale showed UBS had found a solid footing again after becoming one of the biggest victims in the credit crisis, and analysts said the tax deal and government exit could herald a recovery at the bank.

The U.S. deal "obviously helps to rebuild UBS's reputation. With that, one of the most threatening items for UBS on the way back to profitability falls away," said Rainer Skierka, analyst at Swiss bank Sarasin.

Oh, how convenient...

posted on Aug, 20 2009 @ 08:56 AM
Any bets they are throwing the "little fish" under the bus while the big dudes still coast along. If it was ALL the US bank accounts I would be impressed but it is less than 10% percent. Pareto stated 80% of the wealth is held by 10% of the population and it sure won't be this 10%

This particular agreement only covers 4,500 accounts while UBS has something like 50,000+ US clients. jefwane

Also the average amount is about $1,000,000 and although that may sound like a lot to us it is peanuts to the worlds multi-billionaires.

When I see names from the democratic and republican parties,and names like Morgan and Rockefeller then maybe I will be impressed. This is just to quiet the masses before they heap more taxes on our already stressed backs.

Move along folks nothing to see here.....

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