Economy is stable but not out of danger
Sweden seems to have weathered the international financial crisis rather well. The main banks would be able to handle another economic downturn according to the Swedish Financial Supervisory Authority and the Swedish krona has risen steadily against both the dollar in the past few months.
But this does not mean that Sweden, which depends heavily on export and the economic situation in the world, is out of danger.
The Financial Supervisory Authority, FI, released a risk assessment report on Friday highlighting risks that can affect the financial stability negatively for example the ongoing crisis in Europe and the US, consumer protection and the efficient functioning of the financial markets.
“It is not inevitable (that Sweden will be affected by the situation in Europe). If it fades out and there is minor turbulence… I think we will be fine and may even benefit because it seems many of the investors have realised that Sweden and the Nordic countries has something of a quality stamp,” said Lars Frisell, chief economist at FI.
In their report FI has done so called stress tests for main Swedish banks, which they have passed even in the most severe situations. But nationally there is still a problem that many companies, investment firms and smaller banks don’t follow the regulations set up to prevent a deepening of the crisis.
The most recent example is HQ Bank, which had it’s license revoked, after FI found out they were trading at a very high risk without enough security. And Frisell said there is a need to inform company boards that they have full responsibility.
“It is somewhat sad to conclude that it is necessary. When we do go out to boards and highlight the legal necessities so to speak it sill seems to come as a surprise to some board members that they have the full responsibility.”