In profit-seeking companies, shareholders are entitled to a portion of the profit earned.
The portion of shareholders' profits is the dividend. According to the Swiss Code of Obligations, the dividends can only be earned from the profit shown on the balance sheet and from the reserves set up for this purpose. A shareholder is not entitled to interest generated on his or her capital stock. Apart from the dividend, the shareholder receives no other payment (the purchase of treasury shares is authorized only up to a volume of 10% of the capital stock). The statutory capital reserve may be repaid to the shareholders if statutory capital reserves and retained earnings, after deduction of any losses, exceed 50% (20% for holding companies) of the registered share capital.
Since January 1st, 2023, the general assembly has the authority to decide on the distribution of an interim dividend based on interim financial statements. These statements must be audited by the auditing body unless all shareholders approve the payment of the interim dividend and the fulfillment of obligations is not compromised.