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More Swedes take fixed mortgages

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10:35 CET+01:00
Over half of all new mortgages signed in Sweden in December were fixed rate loans, with most fixed for a period of less than five years.

New mortgage lending was valued at 31 billion kronor, according to figures from Statistics Sweden.

Sweden's central bank, the Riksbank, has raised interest rates several times, most recently in December, when they were increased to 3 percent.

At the end of 2006 the total value of mortgages in Sweden was 1.143 billion kronor, an increase of 13.5 percent compared with the same time in 2005.

The average interest rate paid by households in December increased to 4.26 percent, compared with 4.18 percent in November and 3.69 percent at the end of 2005.

Homeowners who had variable rate mortgages saw interest rates increase from an average of 2.91 percent to an average of 4.05 percent.

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