Swiss central bank reports 7.28 billion franc loss in 1st half due to gold holdings

BERLIN - Switzerland's central bank says it lost 7.28 billion francs ($7.8 billion) in this year's first half because of the falling value of gold.

The Swiss National Bank said Tuesday that it lost 13.15 billion francs on its gold holdings. However, the bank benefited from an increase in the value of the U.S. dollar and the euro; it reported a profit of 5.77 billion francs for the January-June period on its foreign currency positions.

The Swiss franc is a popular safe haven asset for investors. The central bank in 2011 imposed a ceiling on its value of 1.20 francs per euro.

The bank noted that its results depend heavily on what goes on in markets — so "strong fluctuations" can be expected and "only provisional conclusions" are possible regarding full-year earnings.