In Switzerland, people are open to switching to a sustainable bank. Swiss banks can gain a competitive advantage by proactively informing, in particular, their younger clients about the bank's sustainable products

February 2020

Swiss clients show a high willingness to switch to a bank that has a clear offer in the area of sustainable financial products. Nevertheless, the majority of Swiss respondents do not know whether their bank offers ecologically sustainable products. This is confirmed by a recent YouGov survey conducted in Switzerland, Germany, and Austria on behalf of the management consultancy BearingPoint.

Switching the Bank - Sustainability plays an increasingly important role

Although the criteria of security, costs, and return on investment are still of central importance, one-third of the Swiss respondents said they would change banks if the bank offered a broader range of ecologically sustainable products. For many German clients, on the other hand, the love of sustainability ends when reaching into their wallets.

Sustainable financial products  - Younger generations are more open

Especially Swiss clients under the age of 44 are more open to changing banks if the bank offers more environmentally sustainable products. However, the main criterion is that the conditions do not deteriorate. For example, around 40 percent of 25 to 44-year-olds would switch to another bank with a broader portfolio of ecologically sustainable products, as long as no worse conditions are in place. By contrast, only 24 percent of those over 55 are willing to do so. Incentive systems, such as a credit card, which can be used to collect environmental sustainability points through sustainable purchasing behavior and convert them into bonuses, arouse great interest, especially among the young age group.

Sustainable banking - Enormous potential for banks

Even though Swiss banks are ahead of Germans in terms of sustainable banking thanks to the higher willingness to pay, this does not mean that banks in Switzerland can sit back and relax. Particularly great potential for banks results from the information deficit of private customers regarding their own bank’s sustainable product offers. The vast majority of respondents in Switzerland, Germany, and Austria still know very little about green financial products. Over 60 percent of respondents in all three countries said they did not know whether their bank offered ecologically sustainable products.

 The survey shows that Swiss banks still have much catching up to do in the area of sustainable finance.

„Sustainable Finance“

About the study „Sustainable Finance“

The data used is based on an online survey conducted by YouGov Deutschland GmbH in which more than 4,000 people in Switzerland, Germany, and Austria took part between December 4 and 13, 2019. The results were weighted and are representative for the respective population aged 18 and over.

Please do not hesitate to contact us if you have any questions regarding the study.

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