Sweden's "loan fest" continues

Swedish households took out $US 7.6 billion more worth of bank loans and mortgages during the third quarter than the last. According to Statistics Sweden, the jump has never been so high during the third quarter.

News agency TT reports that the Swedish "loan fest" has continued, despite a ceiling that the Swedish Financial Supervisory Authority put on mortgages last month.

But Lars Frisell, the chief economist of the Authority, told TT that he is not surprised that households are continuing to take on so much debt. He said that it is still too early to see the ceiling's effects. In fact, there may have been a rush to buy property before the ceiling went into effect in October, said Gunilla Nyström, a private economist with SEB.

TT reports that the new figures give reason to believe that Sweden's central bank will consider more interest rate hikes in the future. The bank recently raised the country's key interest rate to one percent.