One in five Swedish homes depends on benefits

A new survey by Statistics Sweden (SCB) reports nearly 20 percent of households in the country are dependent on government financial support.

The survey, published Tuesday, said one third of Swedes between the ages of 20-64 (about 1.8 million) received support of some kind of support in 2004. The survey considered sickness benefits, unemployment, activity and other economic support.

During that same time, about 14 percent of Swedes had benefit incomes over 80,000 kronor. Ten percent did not have any earned income at all and were entirely dependent on support.

SCB said 40 percent of women took support during 2004 compared to only 30 percent of men. Sick pay was the most common form of support among women whereas unemployment benefits were the most common source of non-salary income among men.

Numbers have not changed much since the 1999 survey, the SCB study said.