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Swiss bank says US tax case a 'major challenge'

February 10, 2012
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GENEVA—A state-owned Swiss bank has described a U.S. tax evasion probe as "major challenge" to it and Switzerland's entire banking industry.

Zurich-based Zuercher Kantonalbank is one of at least 11 Swiss banks under pressure from the U.S. to give up tax-evading American customers and the bankers who aided them.

ZKB said Friday it never actively sought customers in the United States but did receive millions of dollars in deposits from American clients until 2008.

Last month, Switzerland's oldest bank, Wegelin & Co., announced it was selling most of its business after it was indicted in the U.S. with conspiring to help American clients hide more than $1.2 billion from the Internal Revenue Service.

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