Men prosecuted for 300 million SEB fraud

Three men are going on trial in Gothenburg on Friday for defrauding Swedish bank SEB of 300 million kronor.

The Swedish Economic Crimes Unit said that one of the men going on trial was an SEB employee, while the other two were customers. The employee is charged with gross breach of trust; the two customers are charged with fraud.

The customers are a businessman working in the telecoms industry and one of his employees.

The suspected frauds took place in 2001 and 2002. The men were arrested in 2003.

The employee was sacked by the bank when he came under suspicion for the fraud in 2003.

The suspects have made partial confessions to the crimes of which they are accused.


Swedish economy beats growth expectations

Sweden's economy grew by 0.6 percent in the first quarter from the previous three-month period, Statistics Sweden (Statistiska centralbyrån - SCB) said on Wednesday as it released fresh data that beat expectations.

Swedish economy beats growth expectations

“Sweden’s position in Europe remains strong,” Statistics Sweden said, noting Sweden had experienced growth that was “significantly higher than the European average.”

The growth, the strongest recorded in Sweden since the second quarter last year, is significantly higher than analysts’ forecasts.

They had predicted the economy would see weak growth, be flat or even contract, with a survey by Dow Jones Newswires forecasting an average increase of 0.3 percent.

Sweden’s first quarter economic health contrasts sharply with that of countries in the eurozone, of which it is not a member.

Many eurozone countries have registered weak quarterly data, such as Germany which reported 0.1 percent growth, or were in recession, such as France which saw its economy shrink by 0.2 percent.

Sweden’s “upside surprise is mainly due to stronger inventories” while “domestic demand (was) mixed,” SEB bank analyst Erica Blomgren commented on Twitter.

She said “private and public consumption (were) stronger than expected but investments (were) very weak.”

AFP/The Local/at

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