State-Owned Swiss Bank Postfinance Launches App Supporting 13 Cryptocurrencies
The banking subsidiary of the national postal service of Switzerland, Postfinance, has launched a mobile app providing clients with access to cryptocurrencies, ETFs and more. The software allows users to make payments, save funds or invest in various assets, with a commitment to a level of security provided only by the country’s leading online banks.
Swiss Post’s Bank Offers Clients Access to Crypto Assets and Stocks
The new application called Yuh is the product of a partnership between Postfinance and the online trading platform Swissquote. The collaboration was established late last year and the software was unveiled at a virtual launch event on May 11, the bank said in a press release. Anyone who wants to test it is welcome to download and install the app on either an iOS or an Android device. Postfinance emphasized:
With the Yuh app, you can not only execute payments and save for future projects or goals, but also make small or large investments, all from your smartphone.
Users can invest in over 100 of the most popular stocks like those of Apple, Nike, Tesla, or Coca-Cola, as well as exchange-traded funds (ETFs). The two financial companies also revealed that their customers will be able to buy and sell 13 cryptocurrencies from the app, including bitcoin (BTC) and ethereum (ETH).
“With Yuh we place the entire financial world in the palm of their hands. Everyone should be free to decide when, where and how they manage their money,” commented Yuh CEO Markus Schwab.
The platform launches with a promise to maintain “low to no fees” and provide “full transparency at all times” regarding applicable charges. Payments and peer-to-peer transfers are free of charge, for example. However, fees apply to the purchase or sale of equities, 0.5%, and crypto assets, 1%. The costs for these transactions will be clearly displayed within the app. Furthermore, Yuh account holders who deposit 500 Swiss francs or more will receive 500 swissqoins, the app’s cryptocurrency, which Yuh users will be able to trade.
Yuh to Help Postfinance Attract Needed Customers
Postfinance embarked on implementing a new digital banking strategy after registering a serious decline in some of its key indicators last year. Its profit fell from 246 million to 131 million Swiss francs ($145 million), while operating costs increased by 18 million francs (close to $19.9 million) in 2020, Swissinfo detailed in an article reporting on the announcement of Yuh.
In the midst of a global pandemic limiting international travel and spending, Postfinance’s banking clients fell to 2.69 million, from 2.74 million in 2019. Switzerland’s negative interest rates contributed to the trend. Besides, the bank is majority-owned by the Swiss state and as such, it’s not allowed to offer mortgages or corporate loans to compete with private Swiss banks.
The partnership with the online financial services provider Swissquote, which led to the launch of the new mobile app, is part of efforts to adapt to the rapidly changing environment in the country’s banking sector. Digital banking is closing more and more physical branches in Switzerland. With attractive features, such as the option to buy even fractions of company shares and trade a variety of cryptocurrencies at relatively low fees, Yuh is likely to attract new and different customers.
Do you think Postfinance will succeed in expanding its customer base with its new banking app supporting cryptocurrencies? Tell us in the comments section below.