LO anticipates two good years

The Swedish economy will continue to make strides over the next two years. And, according to a new prognosis by trade union confederation LO, the stranded wage deal in the trade sector is in full compliance with economic developments.

“The wage negotiations are going precisely according to plan,” said LO’s chief economist Dan Andersson.

“The agreements that have been drawn up so far, including that of the Commercial Employees Union (Handels), are completely in line with our prognosis,” he added.

LO’s economists are more satisfied with the Riksbank than they have been for a long time. But, not unsurprisingly, the government comes in for scathing criticism.

“We spare a pleasant thought for the Riksbank; its assessment of monetary policy has become stricter. But we reserve an angry thought for the government for its brutal cutbacks in labour market policy,” said LO’s economist Lars Ernsäter.

GDP growth remained strong in 2006, leading to jobs for 80,000 more people than the previous year. And the good times are set to continue for the next two years, although not quite to the same extent, LO’s economists predict.

“At the same time there is a plentiful supply of workers, so there is no risk of overheating,” said Ernsäter, who is also keen to point out that the current drop in unemployment began before the government introduced its policies.

LO’s economists have expressed a strong dislike for the government’s tax deduction for people with jobs, claiming that it is unfair to pensioners, the sick and the unemployed. They would rather use the 39 billion kronor ($5.5 billion) cost of the tax break to finance higher benefit levels, health insurance and early retirement schemes.


Police to investigate Nordea bank over money laundering

Danish police will investigate the Swedish bank Nordea after a year-long probe by regulators into money laundering led to "criticism" of its procedures, the bank said Friday.

Police to investigate Nordea bank over money laundering
Photo: Marcus Ericsson / TT

Detectives will examine how money laundering rules were followed at the bank's Danish subsidiary and could result in “sanctions”, Nordea said in a statement.

“We realize that we initially underestimated the complexity and the time it takes to change our procedures,” said Nordea chief executive Casper von Koskull.

The bank added that 850 Nordea employees are currently involved in the fight against money laundering which the bank plans to increase to 1,150 by the end of the year.

In May 2015 the bank was fined 50 million kronor (€5.4 million euros) – the maximum possible – by Swedish regulators who accused Nordea of “not following money laundering rules for several years” and failing to “evaluate the risks of (doing business with) certain clients”.