Friday, January 09, 2009

All Your Offshore Accounts Are Belong To US(a)

Finally! At least it's not just my pockets uncle sam is diggin into nowdays. Reuters just published this little gem:

Under pressure from the U.S. tax authorities, Swiss wealth management giant UBS is closing all the offshore accounts of its rich U.S. clients, the New York Times said on Friday.

UBS, which the U.S. authorities says helped wealthy Americans hide cash in offshore bank accounts, will shut about 19,000 offshore accounts, the paper said, quoting unnamed U.S. clients.

A UBS spokesman in Switzerland was not immediately available to comment on the report.

The Swiss bank, one of the hardest-hit in the credit crisis, decided in July last year to stop offering offshore accounts to U.S. citizens after it was targeted by the U.S. tax investigation which challenges Switzerland's famous banking secrecy laws.

As part of the investigation, U.S. authorities indicted UBS's wealth management chief last year.