Access

You are not currently logged in.

Access your personal account or get JSTOR access through your library or other institution:

login

Log in to your personal account or through your institution.

Die schweizerische Kriegsfinanzierung

Hans Jenny
Weltwirtschaftliches Archiv
56. Bd. (1942), pp. 269-296
Published by: Springer
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/40430924
Page Count: 28
  • Download ($43.95)
  • Cite this Item
Die schweizerische Kriegsfinanzierung
Preview not available

Abstract

The war finance system of a neutral country is characterised by the fact that the consumption of goods reaches only a comparatively low quota, so that the percentage of national income upon which there is a demand for war needs is in general much lower than is the case in the belligerent countries. Switzerland's total amount of extraordinary expenditure occasioned as a result of the war has been estimated at approximately 4889 million Swiss francs up to the end of 1942. 1170 million francs of this amount are raised by taxation, namely by the introduction of a non-recurrent capital levy (war sacrifice), a progressive incometax and property-tax (war tax), a general tax on stock-turnover and a war profits tax. So far the financing of credits in Switzerland has been carried out by the floating, from time to time, of medium and long term loans. As compared to the years of the Great War, 1914 to 1918, hardly any use has been made in Switzerland since 1939 either of short-term central bank credit or of the foreign money-market. On the other hand, however, the withdrawal of a total of 475 million Swiss francs from the Exchange Equalisation Fund of the National Bank (which was created in connection with the devaluation of the Swiss franc in 1936) represents a recourse to the currency reserves of the country. Even in the third year of the war the part played by taxation in the raising of funds amounts only to about one fifth. An inflation of demand did not occur in Switzerland up to the middle of 1940 despite the increased monetary circulation, as considerable sums of Swiss bank-notes had been hoarded and as both home-production and the import of consumption goods had increased in proportion to the increase in the money volume. It was only in the second stage of the war, i. e. after the collapse of France and the entry of Italy into the war, that the decrease in tiie imports of raw materials and foodstuffs had a direct and an indirect influence on the market. Despite the fact that prices were state-controlled, it was impossible to prevent an increase in the wholesale price index by approximately 100 per cent and an increase by about 40 per cent in the cost of living index. The introduction of new taxes to combat inflationist tendencies is rendered difficult by the peculiarity of the Swiss finance system and the attitude of the majority of the population in financial matters. The fact that each canton is an independent state in itself and the fact that there are 25 different financial systems existing side by side render the problem of equitable taxation one which it is difficult to solve, especially as the taxation systems, the methods of imposing the same and the psychological attitude of the tax payers towards the exchequer as well as the training of the assessors of taxes vary considerably from canton to canton and are thus apt to lead either to defraudation or to the overburdening of one or other of the cantons.

Page Thumbnails

  • Thumbnail: Page 
[269]
    [269]
  • Thumbnail: Page 
270
    270
  • Thumbnail: Page 
271
    271
  • Thumbnail: Page 
272
    272
  • Thumbnail: Page 
273
    273
  • Thumbnail: Page 
274
    274
  • Thumbnail: Page 
275
    275
  • Thumbnail: Page 
276
    276
  • Thumbnail: Page 
277
    277
  • Thumbnail: Page 
278
    278
  • Thumbnail: Page 
279
    279
  • Thumbnail: Page 
280
    280
  • Thumbnail: Page 
281
    281
  • Thumbnail: Page 
282
    282
  • Thumbnail: Page 
283
    283
  • Thumbnail: Page 
284
    284
  • Thumbnail: Page 
285
    285
  • Thumbnail: Page 
286
    286
  • Thumbnail: Page 
287
    287
  • Thumbnail: Page 
288
    288
  • Thumbnail: Page 
289
    289
  • Thumbnail: Page 
290
    290
  • Thumbnail: Page 
291
    291
  • Thumbnail: Page 
292
    292
  • Thumbnail: Page 
293
    293
  • Thumbnail: Page 
294
    294
  • Thumbnail: Page 
295
    295
  • Thumbnail: Page 
296
    296