Swiss Economy Outperforms Expectations in January-March Period, Despite Challenges in Manufacturing Sector

Swiss economy expected to have improved moderately in first quarter, according to SNB

According to the Swiss National Bank, Switzerland’s economy likely performed slightly better in the January-March period compared to previous quarters. During the final three months of 2023, the Swiss economy grew by 0.3% quarter-on-quarter. However, the SNB reported that during the first quarter of 2024, economic growth was “moderate” and driven primarily by the service sector, while manufacturing continued to stagnate.

The main concern in manufacturing is weak global demand, with companies also facing challenges due to the Swiss franc exchange rate. Companies are struggling with pricing, leading to pressure on their margins. The SNB recently cut its key interest rate for the first time in nine years in an effort to stimulate economic activity.

Despite these challenges, the SNB noted that the business outlook is improving. Services sector firms are expecting robust growth to continue, and manufacturing companies are anticipating increases in sales. The SNB remains optimistic about the country’s economic prospects and believes that many economic indicators suggest there was slightly more dynamic economic activity in the first quarter of 2024.

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