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Report: UBS may transfer cost of holding cash to wealthy clients, says CEO

In the context of the Schweizerische Nationalbank's negative deposit rate,UBS Group AG wouldconsider transferring the cost of holding cash to its very wealthy clients if "conditionsremain as they are or grow worse," Bloomberg News reported May 10, citing UBSGroup CEO Sergio Ermotti.

He told shareholders at the bank's annual general meetingthat the other alternative will be "to demand payment for services thatwere previously free – with the possibility that additional fee adjustments inthe future will also be necessary," the newswire reported.

Swiss banks have been facing a deposit rate of negative 0.75% for more than ayear, but have generally refrained from passing on the cost to private bankingand retail banking customers.