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Excerpt from the report “WIR and the Swiss National Economy” (page 23)
Chapter 10. The WIR Credit Clearing System from the Members’ Perspective
Modus operandi of the Central Office
Professor Philip Beard, PhD, Sonoma State University provided the English translation for the document.
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The activities of the WIR Bank can be understood in simplified terms through a juxtaposition of its balance sheet and its profit-loss statement. As of the end of 1997 the positive side of the balance sheet was dominated by WIR assets and mortgage assets totaling 885 million francs. They match the loans received by the WIR members, upon which the latter must pay interest. The interest stemming from the loan business appears on the profit-loss statement as approximately 18 million francs, representing average interest costs of 2.0%. Dominant on the liability side of the balance sheet, amounting to 844 million francs, are the WIR obligations to the members, i.e. the circulating WIR money. These obligations, being interest-free, appear in the profit-loss statement as a finance cost of zero percent. The WIR money furthermore is the basis for the profit from credit clearing activities, totaling 20 million francs.