Australian Open

Fed not immune to franc shock

2015-01-20 14:45
Roger Federer (AFP)

Melbourne - Swiss great Roger Federer said he is not immune to a decision by his nation's central bank to abandon the franc's exchange rate floor, joking that he must now win more matches.

The franc has jumped some 15 percent against the euro since the Swiss central bank stunned markets last Thursday by abandoning the minimum rate of 1.20 francs against the European common currency.

Federer, a 17-time Grand Slam winner and the biggest earner in his sport, joked: "Does it mean I've got to win now?" when asked for his thoughts on the matter at the Australian Open on Monday.

More seriously, he said it was a big concern.

"Switzerland's an interesting place. It's small but quite powerful in some ways," said the 33-year-old, who lives in his homeland with wife Mirka and their two sets of twins.

"Clearly it had an impact on me, too, no doubt about it. Things were going up all the time, so it's normal have it reset.

"But the way it was done, maybe there were some question marks behind that because nobody saw it coming.

"I'm not the expert, so I don't know exactly what you want me to tell you. But I guess for export or tourism it's not ideal, but we'll see how we'll adjust to it now," he added.

Experts have warned that an overheated Swiss franc could have "dramatic" consequences for the country's economy.

The Swiss National Bank imposed an exchange rate floor more than three years ago to stop the franc from appreciating too much against the European single currency.

But it has now raised the white flag, letting the franc float in a move that was felt around the world.

The franc has strengthened about 10 percent against the Australian dollar compared to last year's Australian Open.

Read more on:    australian open  |  roger federer  |  tennis

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