UBS reached a final deal with the US Department of Justice and the Internal Revenue Service: it will disclose the names and account details for more than 4,450 Americans suspected of tax evasion
But do not breathe a sigh of relief just yet. The criteria used to refine the list is a closely-guarded secret. Any UBS depositor is still at risk. We simply cannot know for sure for whom or what the US government is looking.
Further, many believe that this is only the beginning. Recent events suggest that the Swiss government is ready, willing and able to relinquish its title as the reigning leader of bank secrecy and privacy. More names of American depositors will most likely come down. And with a little over one month left in the amnesty period for voluntary disclosure, any American taxpayer with deposits at UBS needs to weigh the risks of disclosure and tax payments now or higher penalties (or worse) later.