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WEALTH

Swedish household wealth rebounds: study

Swedish household wealth has rebounded strongly in 2009 and has now clawed back half of the 976 billion kronor ($143 billion) fall in the wake of the stock market crash.

Swedish household wealth rebounds: study

During the first half of 2009 Swedish household wealth has increased by a net 472 billion kronor, according to Swedish bank SEB’s new saving barometer.

“The strong stock market gains, rising house prices and a high level of savings are the reasons behind the recovery in household wealth. But there is still some way to go before household balance sheets are back at the peak of the summer of 2007,” SEB economist Gunilla Nyström said in a statement.

Swedish household net wealth peaked at 6,903 billion kronor in the second quarter 2007 and bottomed out at 5,604 billion kronor in the fourth quarter of 2008.

Savings increased by 57 billion in the second quarter with 15 billion placed in investment funds.

Swedish household debt in relation to assets declined over the period as a result of the gains and is now 28.4 percent after having been as high as 30 percent.

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EUROPEAN UNION

Stockholm in top ten of EU’s richest regions

Stockholm has been named among the top ten richest regions in the European Union according to a new study published in the Svenska Dagbladet daily on Sunday.

Stockholm in top ten of EU's richest regions

The list, by EU statistics body Eurostat, is calculated based on GDP figures from 2010, with an index based on the union average of €24,500 ($31,800) and adjusted for purchasing power parity.

Stockholm is the only Nordic city claiming a place in the top ten, coming in ninth on 168 percent of the EU average.

Furthermore wealth in Sweden is more evenly distributed than in many other EU countries, with regions in northern Sweden as wealthy as southern Sweden (107 percent).

Western Sweden meanwhile has an indexed score of 117 percent.

The Eurostat list is topped by inner-city London with 338 percent, Luxembourg with 266 percent and Brussels with 223 percent.

Copenhagen and Helsinki make the top twenty, at 15th and 17th, with 157 and 154 percent respectively.

The contrast between wealthy northern European cities and their southern and eastern European counterparts is stark.

Romania and Bulgarian remained the poorest countries in the European Union with 47 and 44 percent respectively.

As the statistics are based on GDP figures from 2010 there will have been some changes however, with Cyprus for example still doing fairly well in the report with a GDP at 97 percent of the European Union average.

TT/Peter Vinthagen Simpson

Follow Peter on Twitter here.

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