Apple Inc. is an American multinational technology company headquartered in Cupertino, that designs and sells consumer electronics, computer software, online services. It is considered one of the Big Four of technology along with Amazon and Facebook; the company's hardware products include the iPhone smartphone, the iPad tablet computer, the Mac personal computer, the iPod portable media player, the Apple Watch smartwatch, the Apple TV digital media player, the HomePod smart speaker. Apple's software includes the macOS and iOS operating systems, the iTunes media player, the Safari web browser, the iLife and iWork creativity and productivity suites, as well as professional applications like Final Cut Pro, Logic Pro, Xcode, its online services include the iTunes Store, the iOS App Store, Mac App Store, Apple Music, Apple TV+, iMessage, iCloud. Other services include Apple Store, Genius Bar, AppleCare, Apple Pay, Apple Pay Cash, Apple Card. Apple was founded by Steve Jobs, Steve Wozniak, Ronald Wayne in April 1976 to develop and sell Wozniak's Apple I personal computer, though Wayne sold his share back within 12 days.
It was incorporated as Apple Computer, Inc. in January 1977, sales of its computers, including the Apple II, grew quickly. Within a few years and Wozniak had hired a staff of computer designers and had a production line. Apple went public in 1980 to instant financial success. Over the next few years, Apple shipped new computers featuring innovative graphical user interfaces, such as the original Macintosh in 1984, Apple's marketing advertisements for its products received widespread critical acclaim. However, the high price of its products and limited application library caused problems, as did power struggles between executives. In 1985, Wozniak departed Apple amicably and remained an honorary employee, while Jobs and others resigned to found NeXT; as the market for personal computers expanded and evolved through the 1990s, Apple lost market share to the lower-priced duopoly of Microsoft Windows on Intel PC clones. The board recruited CEO Gil Amelio to what would be a 500-day charge for him to rehabilitate the financially troubled company—reshaping it with layoffs, executive restructuring, product focus.
In 1997, he led Apple to buy NeXT, solving the failed operating system strategy and bringing Jobs back. Jobs pensively regained leadership status, becoming CEO in 2000. Apple swiftly returned to profitability under the revitalizing Think different campaign, as he rebuilt Apple's status by launching the iMac in 1998, opening the retail chain of Apple Stores in 2001, acquiring numerous companies to broaden the software portfolio. In January 2007, Jobs renamed the company Apple Inc. reflecting its shifted focus toward consumer electronics, launched the iPhone to great critical acclaim and financial success. In August 2011, Jobs resigned as CEO due to health complications, Tim Cook became the new CEO. Two months Jobs died, marking the end of an era for the company. Apple is well known for its size and revenues, its worldwide annual revenue totaled $265 billion for the 2018 fiscal year. Apple is the world's largest information technology company by revenue and the world's third-largest mobile phone manufacturer after Samsung and Huawei.
In August 2018, Apple became the first public U. S. company to be valued at over $1 trillion. The company employs 123,000 full-time employees and maintains 504 retail stores in 24 countries as of 2018, it operates the iTunes Store, the world's largest music retailer. As of January 2018, more than 1.3 billion Apple products are in use worldwide. The company has a high level of brand loyalty and is ranked as the world's most valuable brand. However, Apple receives significant criticism regarding the labor practices of its contractors, its environmental practices and unethical business practices, including anti-competitive behavior, as well as the origins of source materials. Apple Computer Company was founded on April 1, 1976, by Steve Jobs, Steve Wozniak, Ronald Wayne; the company's first product is the Apple I, a computer designed and hand-built by Wozniak, first shown to the public at the Homebrew Computer Club. Apple I was sold as a motherboard —a base kit concept which would now not be marketed as a complete personal computer.
The Apple I went on sale in July 1976 and was market-priced at $666.66. Apple Computer, Inc. was incorporated on January 3, 1977, without Wayne, who had left and sold his share of the company back to Jobs and Wozniak for $800 only twelve days after having co-founded Apple. Multimillionaire Mike Markkula provided essential business expertise and funding of $250,000 during the incorporation of Apple. During the first five years of operations revenues grew exponentially, doubling about every four months. Between September 1977 and September 1980, yearly sales grew from $775,000 to $118 million, an average annual growth rate of 533%; the Apple II invented by Wozniak, was introduced on April 16, 1977, at the first West Coast Computer Faire. It differs from its major rivals, the TRS-80 and Commodore PET, because of its character cell-based color graphics and open architecture. While early Apple II models use ordinary cassette tapes as storage devices, they were superseded by the introduction of a 5 1⁄4-inch floppy disk drive and interface called the Disk II.
The Apple II was chosen to be the desktop platform for the first "killer app" of the business world: VisiCalc, a spreadsheet program. VisiCalc created a business market for the Apple II and gave home users an additional reason to buy an Apple II: compatibility with the office. Before VisiCalc, Apple had been a distant third place c
Swiss Federal Railways
Swiss Federal Railways is the national railway company of Switzerland. It is referred to by the initials of its German and Italian names, either as SBB CFF FFS, or used separately; the Romansh version of its name, Viafiers federalas svizras, is not used. The company is headquartered in Bern, it used to be a government institution, but since 1999 it has been a special stock corporation whose shares are held by the Swiss Confederation and the Swiss cantons. SBB was ranked first among national European rail systems in the 2017 European Railway Performance Index for its intensity of use, quality of service and strong safety rating. While European rail operators such as French SNCF and Spanish Renfe have emphasised the building of high-speed rail, SBB has invested in the reliability and quality of service of its conventional rail network. In addition to passenger rail, SBB operates cargo and freight rail service and has large real estate holdings in Switzerland that provide business revenue to the company.
Swiss Federal Railways is divided into eight groups. The divisions develop the relevant operational business; these divisions are: Passenger traffic Cargo Infrastructure Real estateThe groups serves however the purpose of managing and controlling the company and supporting the operational business of the divisions with service and support function. These groups are: Finance HR IT Communications Corporate Development Safety & Quality Legal and Compliance Supply Chain ManagementThe corporation is led in an entrepreneurial manner. A performance agreement between Swiss Federal Railways and the Swiss Confederation defines the requirements and is updated every four years. At the same time the compensation rates per train and track-kilometre are defined. Subsidiary SBB GmbH is responsible for passenger traffic in Germany, it operates the Seehas services. Further subsidiaries are Cisalpino AG and TiLo; the Swiss Federal Railways hold significant shares of the Zentralbahn and Lyria SAS. To maintain heritage, the Stiftung Historisches Erbe der SBB was founded in 2002.
This foundation takes care of the historic rolling stock and runs a technical library in Bern and photographic archives, the SBB poster collection. All figures from 2016: Length of railway network: 3132 km in standard gauge and 98 km metre gauge Percentage electrified routes: 100% Employees: 33,119 Passengers carried per day: 1.25 million Passenger-kilometer per inhabitant and year: 2,257 kilometres Stations open to passengers: 795 Customer Punctuality: 88.8% of all passengers reached their destination - measured from departure station including any necessary changes - with less than 3 minutes of delay Customer-weighted connection punctuality: 96.7% Freight per year: 53.5 million tons Stations with freight traffic: 193 Railway tunnels: 313 Railway Tunnels total length: 386.1 kilometres Longest Tunnel: 57.1 kilometres world record Railway Bridges: 6004 Railway bridges total length: 104.6 kilometres Electric multiple units: 522 Power Cars: 121 Mainline locomotives: 677 Shunting locomotives: 226 Shunting tractors: 257 Passenger coaches: 2292 Freight wagons: 5937 Hydroelectric plants: 7 Electricity produced and procured: 3.463 GWh Electricity used for railway operations: 2.458 GWh Proportion of traction current from renewable sources: 91.9%The Swiss Federal Railways rail network is electrified.
The metre gauge Brünigbahn was SBB's only non-standard gauge line, until it was out-sourced and merged with the Luzern-Stans-Engelberg-Bahn to form the Zentralbahn, in which SBB holds shares. In the 19th century, all Swiss railways were owned by private ventures; the economic and political interests of these companies led to lines being built in parallel and some companies went bankrupt in the resulting competition. On 20 February 1898 the Swiss people agreed in a referendum to the creation of a state-owned railway company; that year, the Federal Assembly approved the purchase of Schweizerische Centralbahn to operate trains on behalf of the federal government. The first train running on the account of the Swiss Confederation ran during the night of New Year's Eve 1900/New Year's Day 1901 from Zurich via Bern to Geneva, received a ceremonial welcome upon arriving in Bern. SBB's management board was first formed in mid-1901, added Schweizerische Nordostbahn to the system on 1 January 1902; this date is now observed as the "official" birthday of SBB.
The following railway companies were nationalised: Aargauische Südbahn Bötzbergbahn Schweizerische Nordostbahn Schweizerische Centralbahn Toggenburgerbahn Vereinigte Schweizerbahnen Tösstalbahn including the Wald-Rüti Railway Wohlen-Bremgarten Railway Jura-Simplon-Bahn including the Brünigbahn Other companies were included and the rail network was extended. It is still growing today. On 1 January 1999 the Swiss Federal Railway has been excluded from the Federal Administration and became a state-owned limited company regulated by public law. First class compartments were discontinued on 3 June 1956, second and third class accommodation was reclassified as first and second class, respectively. In 1982 SBB introduced th
Luminox is a brand of watch. Their watches are notable for providing long-term luminescence. Luminox Watch Company is a U. S. company headquartered in San Rafael, California. Luminox makes branded watches for various military groups with custom insignias and designs. Among these are the Heliswiss team, the US Bobsled Team, US Coast Guard, US Air Force, United States Navy SEALs, a variety of other special forces and EMS teams worldwide; the brand has since expanded into over 30 countries. Among the more popular watch models are those designed using visual elements of the fighter jets made by Lockheed Martin. To date, Luminox has designed watches taking cues from the SR-71 Blackbird, the F-117 Nighthawk, the F-16 Fighting Falcon, the F-22 Raptor. In 2006, a fifty-percent stake in the Luminox company was purchased by the Swiss brand Mondaine, giving Mondaine increased access to the American market, Luminox increased access to the European and Asian markets. Luminox watches are advertised to possess "always visible technology."
The watch hands and markers contain tritium inserts which provide long-term luminescence, as opposed to phosphorescent markers used in other watches, which must be charged by a light source. The tritium in a gaseous tritium light source undergoes beta decay, releasing electrons which cause the phosphor layer to fluoresce. During manufacture, a length of borosilicate glass tube which has had the inside surface coated with a phosphor-containing compound is filled with the radioactive tritium; the tube is fused with a CO2 laser at the desired length. Borosilicate glass is used for its resistance to breakage. In the tube, the tritium gives off a steady stream of electrons due to beta decay; these particles excite the phosphor, causing it to emit a steady glow. Luminox offers four lines of water resistant watches, labeled "Sea", "Air", "Land" and "Space". There are reported cases of counterfeit watches in circulation for the Luminox brand; the fake Luminox watches are reported to be shinier than originals and have wrong font numbers on the dial.
A trademark, trade mark, or trade-mark is a recognizable sign, design, or expression which identifies products or services of a particular source from those of others, although trademarks used to identify services are called service marks. The trademark owner can be business organization, or any legal entity. A trademark may be located on a label, a voucher, or on the product itself. For the sake of corporate identity, trademarks are displayed on company buildings; the first legislative act concerning trademarks was passed in 1266 under the reign of Henry III, requiring all bakers to use a distinctive mark for the bread they sold. The first modern trademark laws emerged in the late 19th century. In France the first comprehensive trademark system in the world was passed into law in 1857; the Trade Marks Act 1938 of the United Kingdom changed the system, permitting registration based on "intent-to-use”, creating an examination based process, creating an application publication system. The 1938 Act, which served as a model for similar legislation elsewhere, contained other novel concepts such as "associated trademarks", a consent to use system, a defensive mark system, non claiming right system.
The symbols ™ and ® can be used to indicate trademarks. A trademark identifies the brand owner of a particular service. Trademarks can be used by others under licensing agreements; the unauthorized usage of trademarks by producing and trading counterfeit consumer goods is known as brand piracy. The owner of a trademark may pursue legal action against trademark infringement. Most countries require formal registration of a trademark as a precondition for pursuing this type of action; the United States and other countries recognize common law trademark rights, which means action can be taken to protect an unregistered trademark if it is in use. Still, common law trademarks offer the holder, in general, less legal protection than registered trademarks. A trademark may be designated by the following symbols: ™ ℠ ® A trademark is a name, phrase, symbol, image, or a combination of these elements. There is a range of non-conventional trademarks comprising marks which do not fall into these standard categories, such as those based on colour, smell, or sound.
Trademarks which are considered offensive are rejected according to a nation's trademark law. The term trademark is used informally to refer to any distinguishing attribute by which an individual is identified, such as the well-known characteristics of celebrities; when a trademark is used in relation to services rather than products, it may sometimes be called a service mark in the United States. The essential function of a trademark is to identify the commercial source or origin of products or services, so a trademark, properly called, indicates source or serves as a badge of origin. In other words, trademarks serve to identify a particular business as the source of goods or services; the use of a trademark in this way is known as trademark use. Certain exclusive rights attach to a registered mark. Trademark rights arise out of the use of, or to maintain exclusive rights over, that sign in relation to certain products or services, assuming there are no other trademark objections. Different goods and services have been classified by the International Classification of Goods and Services into 45 Trademark Classes.
The idea behind this system is to specify and limit the extension of the intellectual property right by determining which goods or services are covered by the mark, to unify classification systems around the world. In trademark treatises it is reported that blacksmiths who made swords in the Roman Empire are thought of as being the first users of trademarks. Other notable trademarks that have been used for a long time include Löwenbräu, which claims use of its lion mark since 1383; the first trademark legislation was passed by the Parliament of England under the reign of King Henry III in 1266, which required all bakers to use a distinctive mark for the bread they sold. The first modern trademark laws emerged in the late 19th century. In France the first comprehensive trademark system in the world was passed into law in 1857 with the "Manufacture and Goods Mark Act". In Britain, the Merchandise Marks Act 1862 made it a criminal offence to imitate another's trade mark'with intent to defraud or to enable another to defraud'.
In 1875, the Trade Marks Registration Act was passed which allowed formal registration of trade marks at the UK Patent Office for the first time. Registration was considered to comprise prima facie evidence of ownership of a trade mark and registration of marks began on 1 January 1876; the 1875 Act defined a registrable trade mark as'a device, or mark, or name of an individual or firm printed in some particular and distinctive manner. In the United States, Congress first atte
Modern art includes artistic work produced during the period extending from the 1860s to the 1970s, denotes the styles and philosophy of the art produced during that era. The term is associated with art in which the traditions of the past have been thrown aside in a spirit of experimentation. Modern artists experimented with new ways of seeing and with fresh ideas about the nature of materials and functions of art. A tendency away from the narrative, characteristic for the traditional arts, toward abstraction is characteristic of much modern art. More recent artistic production is called contemporary art or postmodern art. Modern art begins with the heritage of painters like Vincent van Gogh, Paul Cézanne, Paul Gauguin, Georges Seurat and Henri de Toulouse-Lautrec all of whom were essential for the development of modern art. At the beginning of the 20th century Henri Matisse and several other young artists including the pre-cubists Georges Braque, André Derain, Raoul Dufy, Jean Metzinger and Maurice de Vlaminck revolutionized the Paris art world with "wild", multi-colored, expressive landscapes and figure paintings that the critics called Fauvism.
Matisse's two versions of The Dance signified a key point in his career and in the development of modern painting. It reflected Matisse's incipient fascination with primitive art: the intense warm color of the figures against the cool blue-green background and the rhythmical succession of the dancing nudes convey the feelings of emotional liberation and hedonism. Influenced by Toulouse-Lautrec and other late-19th-century innovators, Pablo Picasso made his first cubist paintings based on Cézanne's idea that all depiction of nature can be reduced to three solids: cube and cone. With the painting Les Demoiselles d'Avignon, Picasso created a new and radical picture depicting a raw and primitive brothel scene with five prostitutes, violently painted women, reminiscent of African tribal masks and his own new Cubist inventions. Analytic cubism was jointly developed by Picasso and Georges Braque, exemplified by Violin and Candlestick, from about 1908 through 1912. Analytic cubism, the first clear manifestation of cubism, was followed by Synthetic cubism, practiced by Braque, Fernand Léger, Juan Gris, Albert Gleizes, Marcel Duchamp and several other artists into the 1920s.
Synthetic cubism is characterized by the introduction of different textures, collage elements, papier collé and a large variety of merged subject matter. The notion of modern art is related to modernism. Although modern sculpture and architecture are reckoned to have emerged at the end of the 19th century, the beginnings of modern painting can be located earlier; the date most identified as marking the birth of modern art is 1863, the year that Édouard Manet showed his painting Le déjeuner sur l'herbe in the Salon des Refusés in Paris. Earlier dates have been proposed, among them 1855 and 1784. In the words of art historian H. Harvard Arnason: "Each of these dates has significance for the development of modern art, but none categorically marks a new beginning.... A gradual metamorphosis took place in the course of a hundred years."The strands of thought that led to modern art can be traced back to the Enlightenment, to the 17th century. The important modern art critic Clement Greenberg, for instance, called Immanuel Kant "the first real Modernist" but drew a distinction: "The Enlightenment criticized from the outside....
Modernism criticizes from the inside." The French Revolution of 1789 uprooted assumptions and institutions that had for centuries been accepted with little question and accustomed the public to vigorous political and social debate. This gave rise to what art historian Ernst Gombrich called a "self-consciousness that made people select the style of their building as one selects the pattern of a wallpaper."The pioneers of modern art were Romantics and Impressionists. By the late 19th century, additional movements which were to be influential in modern art had begun to emerge: post-Impressionism as well as Symbolism. Influences upon these movements were varied: from exposure to Eastern decorative arts Japanese printmaking, to the coloristic innovations of Turner and Delacroix, to a search for more realism in the depiction of common life, as found in the work of painters such as Jean-François Millet; the advocates of realism stood against the idealism of the tradition-bound academic art that enjoyed public and official favor.
The most successful painters of the day worked either through commissions or through large public exhibitions of their own work. There were official, government-sponsored painters' unions, while governments held public exhibitions of new fine and decorative arts; the Impressionists argued that people do not see objects but only the light which they reflect, therefore painters should paint in natural light rather than in studios and should capture the effects of light in their work. Impressionist artists formed a group, Société Anonyme Coopérative des Artistes Peintres, Graveurs which, despite internal tensions, mounted a series of independent exhibitions; the style was adopted by artists in preference to a "national" style. These factors established the view that it was a "movement"; these traits—establishment of a working method integral to the art, establishment of a movement or visible active core of support, international adoption—would be repeated by artistic movements in the Modern period in art
A watch is a timepiece intended to be carried or worn by a person. It is designed to keep working despite the motions caused by the person's activities. A wristwatch is designed to be worn around the wrist, attached by a watch strap or other type of bracelet. A pocket watch is designed for a person to carry in a pocket; the study of timekeeping is known as horology. Watches progressed in the 17th century from spring-powered clocks, which appeared as early as the 14th century. During most of its history the watch was a mechanical device, driven by clockwork, powered by winding a mainspring, keeping time with an oscillating balance wheel; these are called mechanical watches. In the 1960s the electronic quartz watch was invented, powered by a battery and kept time with a vibrating quartz crystal. By the 1980s the quartz watch had taken over most of the market from the mechanical watch; this is called the quartz revolution. Developments in the 2010s include smartwatches, which are elaborate computer-like electronic devices designed to be worn on a wrist.
They incorporate timekeeping functions, but these are only a small subset of the smartwatch's facilities. In general, modern watches display the day, date and year. For mechanical watches, various extra features called "complications", such as moon-phase displays and the different types of tourbillon, are sometimes included. Most electronic quartz watches, on the other hand, include time-related features such as timers and alarm functions. Furthermore, some modern smartwatches incorporate calculators, GPS and Bluetooth technology or have heart-rate monitoring capabilities, some of them use radio clock technology to correct the time. Today, most watches in the market that are inexpensive and medium-priced, used for timekeeping, have quartz movements. However, expensive collectible watches, valued more for their elaborate craftsmanship, aesthetic appeal and glamorous design than for simple timekeeping have traditional mechanical movements though they are less accurate and more expensive than electronic ones.
As of 2018, the most expensive watch sold at auction is the Patek Philippe Henry Graves Supercomplication, the world's most complicated mechanical watch until 1989, fetching 24 million US dollars in Geneva on November 11, 2014. Watches evolved from portable spring-driven clocks. Watches were not worn in pockets until the 17th century. One account says that the word "watch" came from the Old English word woecce which meant "watchman", because it was used by town watchmen to keep track of their shifts at work. Another says that the term came from 17th century sailors, who used the new mechanisms to time the length of their shipboard watches. A great leap forward in accuracy occurred in 1657 with the addition of the balance spring to the balance wheel, an invention disputed both at the time and since between Robert Hooke and Christiaan Huygens; this innovation increased watches' accuracy enormously, reducing error from several hours per day to 10 minutes per day, resulting in the addition of the minute hand to the face from around 1680 in Britain and 1700 in France.
The increased accuracy of the balance wheel focused attention on errors caused by other parts of the movement, igniting a two-century wave of watchmaking innovation. The first thing to be improved was the escapement; the verge escapement was replaced in quality watches by the cylinder escapement, invented by Thomas Tompion in 1695 and further developed by George Graham in the 1720s. Improvements in manufacturing such as the tooth-cutting machine devised by Robert Hooke allowed some increase in the volume of watch production, although finishing and assembling was still done by hand until well into the 19th century. A major cause of error in balance wheel timepieces, caused by changes in elasticity of the balance spring from temperature changes, was solved by the bimetallic temperature compensated balance wheel invented in 1765 by Pierre Le Roy and improved by Thomas Earnshaw; the lever escapement was the single most important technological breakthrough, was invented by Thomas Mudge in 1759 and improved by Josiah Emery in 1785, although it only came into use from about 1800 onwards, chiefly in Britain.
The British had predominated in watch manufacture for much of the 17th and 18th centuries, but maintained a system of production, geared towards high-quality products for the elite. Although there was an attempt to modernise clock manufacture with mass production techniques and the application of duplicating tools and machinery by the British Watch Company in 1843, it was in the United States that this system took off. Aaron Lufkin Dennison started a factory in 1851 in Massachusetts that used interchangeable parts, by 1861 it was running a successful enterprise incorporated as the Waltham Watch Company; the concept of the wristwatch goes back to the production of the earliest watches in the 16th century. Elizabeth I of England received a wristwatch from Robert Dudley in 1571, described as an armed watch; the oldest surviving wristwatch is one given to Joséphine de Beauharnais. From the beginning, wristwatches were exclusively worn by women, while men used pocket watches up until the early 20th century.
Wristwatches were first worn by military men towards the end of the 19th century, when the importance of synchronizing maneuvers during war, without revealing the plan to the enemy through signaling, was recognized. The Garstin Company of London patented a "Watch Wristlet" design in 1893, but they were producing similar designs from the 1880s
The franc is the currency and legal tender of Switzerland and Liechtenstein. The Swiss National Bank issues banknotes and the federal mint Swissmint issues coins; the smaller denomination, a hundredth of a franc, is a Rappen in German, centime in French, centesimo in Italian, rap in Romansh. The ISO code of the currency used by banks and financial institutions is CHF, although Fr. is widely used by businesses and advertisers. The Latinate "CH" stands for Confoederatio Helvetica. Given the different languages used in Switzerland, Latin is used for language-neutral inscriptions on its coins. Before 1798, about 75 entities were making coins in Switzerland, including the 25 cantons and half-cantons, 16 cities, abbeys, resulting in about 860 different coins in circulation, with different values and monetary systems; the local Swiss currencies included the Basel thaler, Berne thaler, Fribourg gulden, Geneva thaler, Geneva genevoise, Luzern gulden, Neuchâtel gulden, St. Gallen thaler, Schwyz gulden, Solothurn thaler, Valais thaler, Zürich thaler.
In 1798, the Helvetic Republic introduced the franc, a currency based on the Berne thaler, subdivided into 10 batzen or 100 centimes. The Swiss franc was equal to 6 3⁄4 grams of 1 1⁄2 French francs; this franc was issued until the end of the Helvetic Republic in 1803, but served as the model for the currencies of several cantons in the Mediation period. These 19 cantonal currencies were the Appenzell frank, Argovia frank, Basel frank, Berne frank, Fribourg frank, Geneva franc, Glarus frank, Graubünden frank, Luzern frank, St. Gallen frank, Schaffhausen frank, Schwyz frank, Solothurn frank, Thurgau frank, Ticino franco, Unterwalden frank, Uri frank, Vaud franc, Zürich frank. After 1815, the restored Swiss Confederacy attempted to simplify the system of currencies once again; as of 1820, a total of 8,000 distinct coins were current in Switzerland: those issued by cantons, cities and principalities or lordships, mixed with surviving coins of the Helvetic Republic and the pre-1798 Helvetic Republic.
In 1825, the cantons of Berne, Fribourg, Solothurn and Vaud formed a monetary concordate, issuing standardised coins, the so-called Konkordanzbatzen, still carrying the coat of arms of the issuing canton, but interchangeable and identical in value. The reverse side of the coin displayed a Swiss cross with the letter C in the center. Although 22 cantons and half-cantons issued coins between 1803 and 1850, less than 15% of the money in circulation in Switzerland in 1850 was locally produced, with the rest being foreign brought back by mercenaries. In addition, some private banks started issuing the first banknotes, so that in total, at least 8000 different coins and notes were in circulation at that time, making the monetary system complicated. To solve this problem, the new Swiss Federal Constitution of 1848 specified that the federal government would be the only entity allowed to issue money in Switzerland; this was followed two years by the first Federal Coinage Act, passed by the Federal Assembly on 7 May 1850, which introduced the franc as the monetary unit of Switzerland.
The franc was introduced at par with the French franc. It replaced the different currencies of the Swiss cantons, some of, using a franc, worth 1.5 French francs. In 1865, Belgium and Switzerland formed the Latin Monetary Union, in which they agreed to value their national currencies to a standard of 4.5 grams of silver or 0.290322 grams of gold. After the monetary union faded away in the 1920s and ended in 1927, the Swiss franc remained on that standard until 1936, when it suffered its sole devaluation, on 27 September during the Great Depression; the currency was devalued by 30% following the devaluations of the British pound, U. S. dollar and French franc. In 1945, Switzerland joined the Bretton Woods system and pegged the franc to the US dollar at a rate of $1 = 4.30521 francs. This was changed to $1 = 4.375 francs in 1949. The Swiss franc has been considered a safe-haven currency, with a legal requirement that a minimum of 40% be backed by gold reserves. However, this link to gold, which dated from the 1920s, was terminated on 1 May 2000 following a referendum.
By March 2005, following a gold-selling program, the Swiss National Bank held 1,290 tonnes of gold in reserves, which equated to 20% of its assets. In November 2014, the referendum on the "Swiss Gold Initiative" which proposed a restoration of 20% gold backing for the Swiss franc, was voted down. In March 2011, the franc climbed past the US$1.10 mark. In June 2011, the franc climbed past US$1.20 as investors sought safety as the Greek sovereign debt crisis continued. Continuation of the same crisis in Europe and the debt crisis in the US propelled the Swiss franc past US$1.30 as of August 2011, prompting the Swiss National Bank to boost the franc's liquidity to try to counter its "massive overvaluation". The Economist argued that its Big Mac Index in July 2011 indicated an overvaluation of 98% over the dollar, cited Swiss companies releasing profit warnings and threatening to move operations out of the country due to the strength of the franc. Demand for francs and franc-denominated assets was so strong that nominal short-term Swiss interest rates became negative.
On 6 September 2011, when the ex