Are you always aiming for the cheapest solution?

Exactly as @San_Francisco just said: No import possibility, but don’t have to. Simply have one line on your tax form that is referencing to the automated report they hand over for 100 CHF.

Everybody has its own preferences what is cheap or not. For me convenience is really high on my priority list. So coming from UBS, Swissquote is really “cheap” :slight_smile: with most of the services that I expect to receive from a Swiss Bank. But yes, it has its price - I pay probably around CHF 10-30 per month now, depending where I do invest my monthly 4k.

So after 20y the SQ expenses would cost me projected around 23k (6%, CHF 50.-* p.m.). On the other hand, with the same projected calculation I should receive around CHF 1,857m after 20y. So this ratio for having my convenience goals in place is acceptable to me.

*put CHF 50.- average as my monthly investment will grow with time, so the expenses.

Well what service don’t you receive from IB that you get from Swissquote?
Does Swissquote set you up with the WB8 form so you get 15% of the witholding taxes on US securities back? That is around 0.3% per year or around 64’000 chf in your example.
How easy is it to buy securities with USD from a cheap forex trade?

I have to say that the IB web interface is also very easy to use and you can change the language to German or French

Hi @xorfish, we are all on similar paths and have similar goals, which is great as this forum shows every day. There is for sure enough room for our individual preferences to reach FIRE.

Yeah I don’t think you understand how this works.

Swissquote is configured for 15% withholding, but will also withhold an extra 15% for Swiss taxes, both of which are counted for Swiss taxes. It’s actually SAFER than IB where people keep selecting the wrong options on the W-8BEN and therefore getting 30% withholding of which only half is counted towards Swiss taxes, and which requires and end-of-year US tax filing to claim back (did I mention: refund in the form of a USD cheque which is difficult and expensive to cash in Switzerland).


Because I was still not sure about the W-8BEN, I opened a ticket with Swissquote. Ask them where to find the W-8BEN for signing and what else I need to do when owning US ETF’s. Here the answer in German:

"Gerne informieren wir Sie, dass die offizielle US Quellensteuer 30 % beträgt. Für Schweizer Bürger mit Wohnsitz in der Schweiz kommt eine reduzierte Quellensteuer von 15% zur Anwendung, wobei gemäss Doppelbesteuerungsabkommen zwischen der Schweiz und den U.S.A. der Ausgleich mit zusätzlichen 15% auf total 30% stattfindet.

Diese zusätzliche Steuer von 15% können Sie wiederum bei der jährlichen Steuerdeklaration zurückfordern. Somit können Sie sich leider nicht vollständig vom Quellensteuerabzug befreien. Das IRS W-8BEN Formular muss zudem nur eingereicht werden, wenn Ihre Nationalität von Ihrem Wohnsitzland abweicht, was bei Ihnen nicht der Fall ist."

That means for me, that I have to put those ETF’s into the tax “Wertschriftenverzeichnis” and … that’s it?

Yes, and make sure the dividends have ended up on 2 further sheets, namely DA-1 and “zusätzlicher US Rückbehalt”. That way 15% is credited towards your tax bill & 15% is refunded. But using the software should be automatic.


This is a supremely unclear answer. I would ask them, if they are a “qualified intermediary”. Otherwise, you risk losing 15% of dividends.

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The answer is a bit long and unclear, yes. But SQ is a QI.
See US vs. IE based funds if you dont qualify for W8BEN


Big thanks @rolandinho, was searching here in the forum, but misses your professional introduction and explanation to the W8BEN topic. Is all clear for me now… again thanks and thumbs up!

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