Which area of Switzerland offers the highest take-home pay?

Which area of Switzerland offers the highest take-home pay?

New data from German market research firm GfK has revealed which Swiss cantons and towns offer the highest disposable income in 2023. While Switzerland is famed for its high purchasing power and prices in comparison to the rest of Europe, the amount of take-home pay offered can vary wildly across the country. 

Purchasing power in Switzerland to rise in 2023

For the purposes of this study, purchasing power refers to the amount of money left over from an average person’s salary, once the cost of taxes and social security are taken into account. In short, the total amount of money that can be spent on savings, buying or renting property, leisure time and other consumer goods.

According to GfK, workers in Switzerland will have an average of 48.634 Swiss francs to spend in 2023, a slight increase when compared to last year. The rate of purchasing power remains one of the highest in Europe, despite recent reports which have shown that when inflation is added into the mix, Swiss purchasing power has declined to levels unseen since World War Two.

Which Swiss canton offers the highest take-home pay?

In terms of Swiss cantons, one area of the country rises to the top - as it very often does when it comes to wealth rankings like the cheapest taxes, highest rental costs and most expensive cars: Zug. The average inhabitant receives a take-home pay of 77.677 Swiss francs a year, 59,7 percent more than the national average.

Watson attributed Zug’s high score to a combination of high salaries and some of the lowest taxes in the country. It also needs to be noted that while take-home pay is high, so too are living and housing costs.

Average purchasing power varies hugely by canton

The traditional low-tax cantons of Schwyz (69.973 francs a year per person) and Nidwalden (59.651 francs) rounded out the podium, with the expat hub of Canton Zurich placing fourth. Watson noted that only eight of the 26 cantons have an average take-home pay higher than the national average, further showcasing how much of an outlier some of the richest cantons are. 

For those interested, the canton with the lowest take-home pay was Jura at around 42.208 Swiss francs per person per year. While this is 13 percent lower than the national average, Watson added that it is still 16.300 francs a year more than the average purchasing power for German citizens (25.830 francs a year).

10 Swiss cantons that offer the highest disposable incomes

In all, here are the Swiss cantons that offer the highest take-home pay:

  1. Zug (77.677)
  2. Schwyz (69.973)
  3. Nidwalden (59.651)
  4. Zurich (55.234)
  5. Obwalden (52.721)
  6. Appenzell Innerrhoden (50.619)
  7. Basel-Land (50.350)
  8. Geneva (49.215)
  9. Basel-Stadt (48.520)
  10. Lucerne (47.766)

While these rates of purchasing power are eye-watering on their own, they pale in comparison to some Swiss councils (Gemeinde), especially those known for their affluent communities and low taxes.

Which Swiss towns offer the highest take-home pay?

In all, here are the towns with the highest disposable income in the country:

  1. Höfe, Schwyz (118.970)
  2. Meilen, Zurich (78.126)
  3. Zug, Zug (77.677)
  4. Küssnacht, Schwyz (71.584)
  5. March, Schwyz (64.703)
  6. Horgen, Zurich (62.530)
  7. Lavaux-Oron, Vaud (59.661)
  8. Nidwald, Nidwalden (59.651)
  9. Zurich Affoltern, Zurich (58.061)
  10. Nyon, Vaud (56.846)

For more information, check out the GfK study.

Thumb image credit: / Sriya Pixels

Jan de Boer


Jan de Boer

Jan studied in York and Sheffield in the UK, obtaining a master's in broadcast journalism and a bachelor's in history. He has worked as a radio DJ, TV presenter, and...

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