One of Switzerland’s oldest private banks is to charge clients negative interest rates on cash balances over SFr100,000, in the latest sign of the widening fallout of the Swiss National Bank’s struggle to cope with the strength of the franc.

Last week, the SNB stunned markets around the world by abandoning the cap it imposed three years ago to stop the franc appreciating beyond SFr1.20 per euro.

At the same time, to try and make the franc — which functions as a haven currency — less attractive, the central bank said it would push Swiss interest rates further into negative territory, cutting its deposit rate from -0.25 per cent to -0.75 per cent.

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