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Browsing Blog Marina's Blog (currently on 22-May-1212)
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Social responsibility activism
Blog Post

Publicize the inner workers and financial information

22-May-2012 [1187]

The Alternative Bank Schweiz,, is a more democratic Swiss bank which recently won an award from the ZKB (Z├╝rcher Kantonalbank) for being a retailbank which valued transparancy, sustainability and ethics, over maximizing profits. The ABS donated the prize of CHF 40,000.00 to the Institute for Social Banking. CHF is the denomination or currency known as the Swiss franc.

This Swiss bank(ABS) publishes its transactions, so that the relationship between lenders and borrowers is different. There is transparency of a level not found in many institutions, not even governments which purport to be transparent. This bank publishes all approved loans and loan information, as well as allows people to see its inner workings. It values community and the impact its presence has on the local community and that is part of the way it does business.

This detailed financial information is generally not public, so this bank caught my attention. Governments have handled tax money in round about ways, making even those with Freedom of Information Requests have to beg for that sort of "down to the penny" understanding of money handling. It is interesting to see that a bank can support community and be transparent.

Key financial data at 31 December 2011


Euros (approx.)

Balance sheet total

1 124 millions

9 36 millions

Balance sheet growth

+ 10,8 %

Client assets

1 039 millions

865 millions

Number of clients


Value of loans

852 millions

710 millions

Number of creditors


Number of shareholders


Number of co-worker


Proportion of women in management positions


(CHF is the Swiss Franc-editor)