SNB activates capital buffer in face of overheating mortgage market

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The Swiss government today approved a request by the Swiss National Bank (SNB) to activate the country's counter-cyclical capital buffer (CCB), as the central bank attempts to contain rapid mortgage lending growth and rising house prices.

In a statement, the SNB says despite weak growth and tighter regulations applied to mortgage financing in July, mortgage lending volumes and residential real estate prices again increased "sharply" in the second half of 2012. The central bank responded by

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