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CURRENCY

Wise currency position yields profit for Sweden’s Debt Office

.Sweden's National Debt Office (Riksgälden) reported on Friday that it made 2.5 billion kronor ($271 million) by taking an active position for a stronger dollar against the euro

“It is particularly pleasing during such a turbulent year to have succeeded so well by making use of the weak dollar prior to the summer,” said the head of Debt Office’s foreign currency operations, Bengt Rådstam, in a statement.

“We were convinced that it would not be possible to sustain such a weak dollar. The strong demand for the dollar in the wake of the crisis also aided a significant strengthening of the dollar, which was more rapid than we had expected.”

The gains reduced the costs of the government’s interest burden, which amounted to 33 billion kronor in 2008, according to the Debt Office.

In mid-2008, the Debt Office’s board implemented a new strategic foreign exchange position based on a strengthening dollar, was at the time was weak in relation to the euro.

When the position was taken, the dollar was trading at $1.58 per euro, and when the Debt Office closed its position, the US currency had strengthened to $1.26 per euro.

In addition, the Debt Office reported that its active management of foreign currency holdings yielded gains of 500 million kronor in 2008.

FOOTBALL

Sweden sink Russia at women’s Euro

Captain Lotta Schelin and Stina Blackstenius powered Sweden to a 2-0 win over Russia at the women's Euro tournament in Deventer on Friday.

Sweden sink Russia at women's Euro
Sweden's Stina Blackstenius (L) vies with Russia's Elvira Ziyastinova during the UEFA Women's Euro 2017 football match between Sweden and Russia at Stadion De Adelaarshorst in Deventer on Friday. PHOT
Schelin scored Sweden's opening goal on 22 minutes, heading in a superb free-kick taken by Magdalena Ericsson.
 
Blackstenius made it 2-0 in the 51st minute as she picked up a poor goal kick by Russian keeper Tatiana Shcherbak, beat two defenders and fired a shot that Anna Kozhnikova only managed to deflect into the net off the post.
 
“Three points, two goals, that's good,” said Sweden coach Pia Sundhage. “I'm happpy about the result and parts of the performance, especially in the first half.”
 
Russia could have secured a quarter-final berth if they had won, following their surprising 2-1 win over Italy in the Group B opener.
 
But they never got close as Sweden put them under heavy pressure from the start with Kosovare Asllani's long-range shot smacking the crossbar on 10 minutes.
 
It took Russia half an hour to threaten up front, but Elena Danilova missed from long range.
 
At the other end, Schelin shot narrowly wide across goal and Linda Sembrant headed wide from a corner just before half-time.
 
Sweden continued to dominate in the second half but squandered their chances, with Sembrant heading against the post five minutes from the end.
 
“Sweden were very strong when it comes to set pieces, there were a lot of them and this was something that didn't allow us to play well,” said Russian coach Elena Fomina.
 
In the other Group B game, defending champions Germany edged Italy 2-1.