The "Wealth Tax" Contagion Is Rapidly Spreading: Switzerland, Cyprus And Now ....

Tyler Durden's picture

It was only yesterday that we wrote about comparable problems to those which Russian depositors may (or may not be?) suffering in Cyprus right, this time impacting wealthy Americans and their Swiss bank accounts, where as a result of unprecedented DOJ pressure the local banks will soon breach all client confidentiality and expose all US citizens who still have cash in the former tax haven under the assumption that they are all tax evaders and violators. And in the continuum of creeping wealth taxes which first started in Switzerland, then Cyprus, and soon who knows where else, there was just one question: "The question then is: how many of the oligarchs, Russian or otherwise, who avoided a complete wipe out and total capital controls in Cyprus, will wait to find out if the same fate will befall them in Switzerland? Or Luxembourg? Or Lichtenstein? Or Singapore?" Today we got the answer, and yes it was one of the abovementioned usual suspects. The winner is.... Lichtenstein.

Yes: the little principality that is an even greater tax (evasion) haven for the world's ultra wealthy, even more so than Zurich, Geneva or Zug, is now under Big Brother's microscope.

But fear not. All the other tax havens listed above are quite certainly about to meet the iron, resolute fist of the US Department of Injustice. After all, unlike TBTF banks, depositors are hardly "systemic", and thus Eric Holder and his henchmen will have zero reservations when pursuing the full extent of the (selectively crony) US laws against them.

From Bloomberg:

The U.S. has asked Liechtenstein to hand over data on foundations that may have been used to hide untaxed American money from the Internal Revenue Service, a step that may threaten Swiss banks. 


The U.S. wants to know the number of foundations set up by fiduciaries -- lawyers, accountants, financial advisers and asset managers -- for American taxpayers, according to a letter sent by the Department of Justice to authorities in the Alpine principality. A “formal request” to fiduciaries will follow, the DOJ said. 


“Seeking documents from the Liechtenstein fiduciaries is an important investigative step,” which will shed light on “the roles of banks, of bankers outside of Liechtenstein,” the Justice Department wrote in the letter, adding that it looked forward to receiving the data by March 29.


The DOJ is investigating at least 11 financial firms, including Credit Suisse Group AG (CSGN) and Julius Baer Group Ltd. (BAER), for allegedly helping Americans hide money from the IRS. The Liechtenstein request will add to the information the IRS garnered as 38,000 Americans avoided prosecution through an amnesty program, which involved paying back taxes and penalties and disclosing their offshore accounts and bankers. 


“It’s a further evolution of the Department of Justice using third-party fiduciaries to gather more information on these structures and the banks involved,” said Milan Patel, a former IRS trial attorney who is now a partner at Zurich-based law firm Anaford AG. “This could be bad news for Switzerland, as the information could be used against more Swiss banks.”

In case anyone is still confused about what is going on, here is the summary: any geographic venue that for whatever reason was once considered a global tax haven in the "Old Normal", be it Switzerland, Greece, Luxembourg, Singapore, or as the case may be Lichtenstein, is now fair game for confiscation and otherwise expropriation of local capital. 

Alas, as this money will not be enough to plug what is not a liquidity but global insolvency black hole, which is made worse daily by the endless interventions of central planners, once the deposits of the wealthy at these small, powerless to defend themselves countries is concluded, next come the entities with the really big deposits: the US, the Eurozone, and the grand daddy of them all: China.

In other words, the forced ~30% wealth tax on all financial assets is coming. Just as foretold here first in September of 2011 and as was recapped last weekend.

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chubbyjjfong's picture

Just like Herpes.. once it starts.. you'll never get rid of that shit. 

kaiserhoff's picture

If these retards last long enough,

they will figure out that friends come and go,

but enemies accumulate.

new game's picture

suprise, suprise, suprise; gee wiz, who woda thunk a statist would go to where da money is and create a tax to get at it.

smart as a bank robber.  only thing there missing is the mask...

Mark Carney's picture

In other news:


Man in Alberta selling his house for




CClarity's picture

Why no mention of the Caymans or Jersey or other off-shore parking zones so beloved by the US elites and politicians?

kaiserhoff's picture

Hush yo mouff.  Moochelle got plans for Bamy's third term, and then her three.

Unlike that old white lady, they got Opra on day side.

HoofHearted's picture

Seriously, people, you can be your own Central Bank. All you need is a lake and some shiny stuff.

Muddy1's picture

I will be avoiding the tax/haircu(N)t.  I exercised my own capital controls by emptying my account, and safe deposit box.  I am my own central bank.


Bicycle Repairman's picture

"Why no mention of the Caymans or Jersey or other off-shore parking zones so beloved by the US elites and politicians?"


smlbizman's picture

im sorry , i was shoviling my drive here in delaware......whats the question?

thisandthat's picture

The question was... rhetoric

Buck Johnson's picture

Because that is our elite money laundering areas along with Britian and it's in our sphere of influence aka hemisphere.  They won't go after them until the rest are gone and then do the 30% tax. 

Dugald's picture


suh! you is talkin of America's finest....

and also most untouchables.....

Thar ya go!!

akak's picture


Man in Alberta selling his house for bitcoins....

No, that was just an editor's mistake.

The man in Alberta is actually selling his house for 5400 pounds of Bit O'Honey candy.

Not only is Bit O'Honey tangible, physical, recognizable, storable and divisible, but best of all, you can eat it.

zanez's picture

Bit O'Honey, BITCHEZ!

scrappy's picture

You ZH guys are a trip. And smart.

thisandthat's picture


They also cut out the transaction fees

What's he talking about? Cost me 5€ to transfer 10k within Eu - compare that to the buy/sell spread in BCs....

and limits that come with moving money via a traditional bank

Oh?!...Those 10k were cash withdrawn in a single operation, no questions asked - again, try doing that with BCs...

kill switch's picture

If these retards last long enough,


Whores, Ugly Buildings, and Politicians all become respectable if they last long enough..

Proofreder's picture

+1 for the Chinatown ref ... a pity great films like this are no longer made, in deference to zombie flix.

Polanski and Nicholson - whatta pair.

"You may think you know what you're dealing with, but believe me, you don't," is perhaps more aprospo to the times.


formadesika3's picture

Forgot to mention Grand Fenwick.

Slartibartfast's picture

Not a lot will get the reference (and even fewer have seen the film), but Sir I salute you! That scheme seems almost reasonable compared to what's going on. Forget mice roaring...anyone ever see what happens when a a few mice are caught in one of those 'live' traps? They start eating each other...elites are no different. Music over, all the chairs the real games begin.

Tango in the Blight's picture

CaliforniTURDS should stop counterfeiting Pinot Grand Fenwick or THIS MEANS WAR!

formadesika3's picture

That film was a travesty! Also the book I might add. No self-respecting Grand Fennyuckian deigns to take notice of such twaddle. 


It being the land of my bird, I admit I was a little peeved it wasn't mentioned. Mention Lickenstein but Not Grand Fenwick! Unpossible!

But not as a tax haven! 

It is a Grand LIE that the Ducky is a haven for tax cheats!

That's all I have to say on the subject.

Now I will sing the National Anthem (as parsevalleyed in the local idiom):


Gran' Fen-nyuck-yuck, Gran' Fen-nyuck-yuck!

I tip my crowns to theeee

Like stargazers from a new bride's bosom,

Thy gold crowns amassed is unsurpassed,

No taxation nor inflation,


Wonder pair! Wonder pair!

The twin peaks of mine vision


Da da dah-dah-dah da dadada da

Da da dah-dah-dah da dadada da


Gran Fen-nyuck-yuck Gran Fen-nyuck-yuck!

The land of my bird,

No invasion force can stay her course

Th' dream we seek in steering clear

Of troublepuss bitchez and far hen herds!


Wonder pair! Wonder pair!

The twin peaks of my vision


When you get down, just take a nod to ol' Fenyucky,

Piddlin' lil place gets my heart all a-plucky!


Gran' Fen-nyuck-yuck Gran Fen-nyuck-yuck!

Landlocked yes but locked in love,

Like stargazers from a new bride's breast,

All true Fenyucksters welcome at the community chest!

Steeped in her blessings are we!


Wonder pair! Wonder pair!

The twin peaks of mine vision

wee-weed up's picture

Easy way to "get rid of that shit"...

Take your money outta the fukin' banks and buy gold & sliver!

Kaiser Sousa's picture

"Easy way to "get rid of that shit"... Take your money outta the fukin' banks and buy gold & sliver!"

exactly!  you can lead a american to freedom but it would appear you got to hit him in the fucking head with a brick before he grasps it.... 

wee-weed up's picture

Unfortunately, the American populace has been "successfully" dumbed down. The Socialists have had control over public education for the last 30 years. And now they control the MSM too. If you doubt this, just ask yourself how in the hell someone like Obama, with his miserable record, ever got re-elected.

MrPalladium's picture

They have had control of the MSM for the last 80 years.

bigkahuna's picture

IMO, the same way the last few presidents were elected, diebold.


Yeah, low information voters are not helping anything.

Proofreder's picture

As in:

You can lead a horticulture, but you cannot make her think ?



max2205's picture

Hello, so long, we hate to see you go.....

onelight's picture

So long and thanks for all the fish.

Urban Redneck's picture

Apparently you aren't familiar with what FATCA does and does NOT say.

Larry Dallas's picture

What you won't see are the names of prominent law makers. They pulled out a long time ago...

Money Squid's picture

Chubby, sorry to hear about your condition. Hang in there buddy.

Tsar Pointless's picture

May I be the first to say, "Whocouldanode?".

Abraxas's picture

Nobody fucks with Lichtenstein!

wee-weed up's picture

Bernanke pronounces it...


kaiserhoff's picture

Do they have their own language, or just a bad throat condition?

OK, that's always thrown at the Dutch, but it's still funny.

hooligan2009's picture

liechtenstein is a landlocked country owned by a royal family. it has one street a few roundabouts and a michelin star hotel. it is about 2 miles long half a mile wide and completely surround by (very high) mountains.

and no, i didn't go there for tax reasons!!!!

DirkDiggler11's picture

And of all people Gen George S Patton is buried in a small millitary cemetery in Lichtenstein.

wee-weed up's picture

Patton is buried in Luxembourg, not Lichtenstein. They're both tiny countries, but Luxembourg is about 20 times bigger than Lichtenstein. One can drive across miniscule Lichtenstein in about 10 minutes. I've visited both - and I saw Patton's grave whilst in Luxembourg.

Likstane's picture

Being from Likenstane myself, I can vouch for Patton being in the Shitstreke cemetary of Likenstane; he was a national hero and was rehypothecated there.  I'm pretty sure Barry Manilow is also from Likenstane. 

scrappy's picture

Thanks for the historical correction.


Correcting history is worthy of ZH, which it does everyday!


Something to ponder huh?

smlbizman's picture

i love google map....liechtenstein seems very inviting...

Ratscam's picture

trust me it is incredibly boring, even the royal family live mostly in Vienna or other capitals of Europe

nmewn's picture

Grand theft sovereigns...its not just for sheeple anymore ;-)

Phroneo's picture

I don't know, in terms of tax evasion, I have no problems with this. If people have legitimate money in these places then I'm sure they will be fine. Ideally, tehre would be no tax havens and we wouldn't need this privacy breach. But since they exist and lead to a lot of tax cheating (which normal citizens cannot partake in), it's a neccesary evil. 


Besides, it does kind of fulfill the "transparency" condition of a free market :P