ZURICH, March 6 Switzerland's central bank
earned 1.52 billion Swiss francs ($1.51 billion) in 2016 from
banks paying negative interest rates, it said on Monday, up from
1.16 billion francs in 2015.
In its annual report, the Swiss National Bank also confirmed
profit for 2016 of 24.5 billion francs, the bulk of which came
from gains on its foreign currency holdings.
The SNB is not required to make a profit, with its main
mandate to ensure price stability in Switzerland. But a portion
of any profit it does make is distributed to the Swiss
government and the country's 26 cantons.
($1 = 1.0084 Swiss francs)
(Reporting by Joshua Franklin)