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Swiss National Bank Slammed For Massive Valeant Loss; Adds Another 900,000 Apple Shares In Q3

Six months ago we were surprised to learn that the Swiss National Bank - a central bank - had been one of the biggest buyers of AAPL stock in the first quarter, when it added 3.3 million shares to its existing position, or 60%, bringing the total to 9 million shares, for a grand total of $1.1 billion.

Then three months ago, in its Q2 13-F update, this number rose to $1.2 billion when the SNB added another 490K shares in its top position.

Overnight, the SNB which unlike the Fed and the other "serious" central bank hedge funds, released a 13-F updating on its latest stock portfolio.

We learned that in the quarter in which AAPL stock tumbled to $92 during the August 24 ETFlash crash, and has since then rebounded once again (perhaps courtesy of SNB buying) the Swiss money printing authority which reported a record $20 billion loss in the second quarter, and a record $52 billion in the first half, added another 909,000 AAPL shares, bringing its new grand total to 10.3 million shares, however due to the decline in AAPL's price, its dollar-equivalent value declined to $1.1 billion as of Sept. 30.


Asside from AAPL, the SNB was busy buying many other stocks as well, and as of Q3 its total equity AUM increased from $37.5 billion to $39.9 billion even as most equity prices declined substantially in the interim period.

Among the SNB's top holdings there were few changes, and are shown in the chart below, with AAPL by and far the biggest holding of the Swiss central bank. 


However one of its stocks that has caused major headaches for the monetary authority is the one highlighted in position 24: Valeant, of which the SNB held 1.442 million in Q3, having added 165,300 shares in the second quarter as we pointed out last week:

The Swiss National Bank owns 1,276,960 VRX shares

— zerohedge (@zerohedge)

It is this stock which has crashed in the interim period, and which was down another 8% as of this moment to a new 2 year low...


... that has raised some questions. Here is the Swiss Finanz and Wirtschaft:

On one item the SNB is likely to have little joy: the shares of Valeant have plummeted around 46% since the end of September. This burdened the portfolio of the National Bank which sat on 1.4 million shares of the pharmaceutical conglomerate. The securities even ranked ahead of Intel and Wal-Mart Stores among the twenty-five largest positions. Measured against the current price of $ 95.41 so that resulted in a book loss of nearly $120 million.

Make the current price $85.

How long until the Swiss population takes an activist hammer to the SNB's "passive" holder nail and demands that the central bank dump the stake before it creates even more "austerity" for Switzerland: recall that if the SNB does not generate profits on its portfolio, it has no cash to distribute to the Swiss cantons, leading to angry protests from the local population which has gotten used to this explicit central bank subsidy.