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Swedish women battle mounting debts

Swedish women battle mounting debts

Published: 30 May 2011 15:46 GMT+02:00
Updated: 30 May 2011 15:46 GMT+02:00

Women are experiencing increasing problems servicing SMS loans and for the first time are defaulting at the same levels as men, according to a new survey from the Swedish Enforcement Authority (Kronofogden).

"Traditionally men's debt has dominated, but in 2010 we detected indications that women's percentage share of unpaid SMS loans had increased. Last year women stood for 50 percent of the cases," said Cecilia Fredholm at the authority.

Fredholm explained the situation in that consumer habits and society have changed.

"Not that long ago, white goods were the only things you could buy on credit, today you can buy clothes, food and petrol and pay after the fact," she said.

The authority identifies the trend as particularly concerning as women often lack savings as a result of pay disparities and weaker social networks.

"Our conclusion is that women are more exposed when they experience problems with their private finances," Fredholm said in a statement.

Fredholm is heading a project to target female debt and as part of this push, the authority has announced the launch of a new website.

The website contains collated information and concrete advice to enable women to get their financial house in order. Furthermore there are testimonies from other women who have experienced similar precarious financial straits.

The survey showed that are significant regional disparities with regards to SMS debt defaults, with women in Jämtland, Halland and Kronoberg counties particularly vulnerable to default.

The authority appealed other actors in Swedish society for more help in disseminating information to Sweden's women.

"We need help to spread information and communicate knowledge," Cecilia Fredholm said, underlining that knowledge is crucial to addressing the situation.

Peter Vinthagen Simpson (news@thelocal.se)

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Your comments about this article

17:03 May 30, 2011 by bs3eggs
sms loans should be banned or at least replaced by credit cards with controlled interest rates. This is nanny state stuff this is just to give people low cost credit options that dont totally screw there finances. sms loans are loan sharks
17:11 May 30, 2011 by kenny8076
So when women have a bad time its time for change and help..... but previously men were over 50% of the problem with debt and no one says anything...... hate the discrimination!! When it comes to employment, child support, kids, or money in general women are spoon fed....... but yet demand "independence", whacky system both here and in the States,
18:27 May 30, 2011 by swedejane
Ha...good point kenny8076.

This is the first I've heard of an sms loan. I think I'll stay away.
21:37 May 30, 2011 by Renfeh Hguh
Why target women's debt? They want equality and are now they are getting it, so they should be happy.

Oh yeah, equality is only good when it suits.
07:34 May 31, 2011 by luke123
The Swedish pimpocracy:

http://maggiemcneill.wordpress.com/2010/12/18/the-swedish-pimpocracy/

"The Swedish government only "promotes" feminism as a domineering pimp "promotes" a whore: As a commodity to be bought, sold or traded for its own purposes. Sweden views women as a natural resource to be exploited in much the same way as it exploits timber, hydropower and iron ore, and its leaders only mouth platitudes about "equality" to keep female Swedish voters happy so they can stay in power. Its dismal record on rape and its tyrannical efforts to reduce whores to slaves of its bloated welfare state demonstrate that Sweden doesn't actually care about the welfare of individual women, but rather only about the political support of women collectively. "
17:50 June 1, 2011 by philster61
Renef hguh...

You took the words right out of my mouth. They want equality , well with equality comes expense. Perhaps they might wish to cut back on the expensive cosmetic makeovers and surgery.... Then they might begin to appreciate what equality means...
14:25 June 2, 2011 by Frank Arbach
With respect to previous posters, I don't think getting into debt is anything to score "sexual equality" points over.

Debt really could destroy anyone's life and I think much more education is needed to encourage people to make better decisions in managing finance

The other side of the coin is companies should take some of the responsibility also.
19:41 June 2, 2011 by Maggie Malay
@ Frank Arba

"..companies should take some of the responsibility also" Absolutely!
19:42 June 2, 2011 by Grokh
i really dont like that society became this debt to live, makes people slaves to banks.
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