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Swedes’ opposition to euro hits record high

TT/Rebecca Martin · 15 Jun 2011, 17:37

Published: 15 Jun 2011 17:37 GMT+02:00

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If there had been a referendum on the euro in May 2011, 64 percent of Swedes would have voted against the euro while 24 percent would have voted in favour. 12 percent would have been undecided, according to a new poll from Statistics Sweden.

The number of those in favour of the eurozone has decreased in Sweden since November last year, while the number of Swedes who are against has increased.

However, the survey also shows that the majority of Swedes would have voted in favour of membership in the EU if there had been a referendum today.

52 percent said they would vote in favour, whereas 21 percent would have voted against and 27 percent were undecided, according to the survey.

Between November 2010 and May 2011 the number of those in favour of EU membership has decreased while the number against has increased.

When Sweden held a referendum on adopting the euro in September 2003, 55.9 percent voted against and 42 percent voted in favour.

Story continues below…

When Sweden voted on EU membership in 1994, 52.3 percent were in favour and 46.8 percent of Swedes voted against.

TT/Rebecca Martin (news@thelocal.se)

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Your comments about this article

18:11 June 15, 2011 by Roy E
It's encouraging to see more people awakening to the fact that forfeiting sovereignty (and therefore your right to self-determination) to bureaucrats far, far away is a very, very foolish idea.
18:34 June 15, 2011 by rybo1
Good for us all! Sweden should get out of the EU. It's nothing but an albatross around our collective necks. Sweden should sail its own boat without alliances to the EU or to the US.
19:07 June 15, 2011 by Extranjero
I´m concerned about the 24% in favour. Do the read and write? Do the know about Greece?
20:58 June 15, 2011 by dizzymoe33
My Aunt lives in Germany and she says the worst thing they ever did was change over to the Euro from the Mark you don't get as much for your money as they used to. I hope Sweden keeps her SEK and don't adopt the Euro.
21:15 June 15, 2011 by swedejane
It appears that Sweden made a good move by not switching their currency.
21:22 June 15, 2011 by Iraniboy

It is good to remind you that EU and Euro are different!!

EU has helped alot for providing similar standards in all European countries yet when it comes to money, people should be more concerned. The issue of Iceland and Greece shows that unfortunately people do not understand responsibility when it comes to money. So it's better to keep the currency seperated!
22:50 June 15, 2011 by mkvgtired
dizzymoe33, My best friend lives in Germany and is married to a German woman. Every single German I have ever talked to on the subject is against the Euro, and would like to see the Mark come back. If you look at the percentage of global currency reserves when the Euro was introduced, the Euro was almost exactly at the level of German Marks and French Franks, i.e. markets only had confidence in these two economies for backing up the entire currency block. This is all to apparent today.

Everyone is paying for the PIIGS (namely Greece as of now). The US funds about 25% of IMF loans (officially 17%, but many poor members are not expected to contribute). Other large economies also fund large portions of these loans. Germany has to fund its IMF portion and also contribute large sums in additional support. I see Greeks protesting in the streets. I'd like them to go to Germany and tell everyday Germans why they should continue to work hard to fund their overindulgent government.
08:46 June 16, 2011 by Buckshot
Eu is just a waste of money, Swedish money.
09:37 June 16, 2011 by canuk
wow, what a stark realization, when the SEK is strong, they dont back the euro...and when the SEK is weak they back the euro, this is really rocket science. Glad that people are paid for these amazing discoveries from the swedish population.
10:24 June 16, 2011 by StockholmSam
Canuk beat me to it.

Greece's situation is not a result of the Euro, it is the result of the decisions their leadership has made and the economic strategies they have undertaken. It would not have made a difference had they not been on the Euro, they still would have acted irresponsibly and found their way into this mess. And while the Euro obligates Eurozone countries to assist Greece in this situation, the benefits of EZ cooperation outweigh the disadvantages. Had there been no Euro and Greece found itself in its present situation, it would have been a disaster to refuse to help their economy. Imagine a collapsed economy in the middle of Europe. Imagine the ripple effects throughout Europe. The results of not helping would have been far worse than the results of helping and someday, other EZ countries may need the same help. They won't be bitching then.
15:37 June 16, 2011 by Marc the Texan
I remember when the Euro was introduced in Spain. Prices shot up over night. Worker productivity, not so much. The Euro made everyone in southern Europe feel richer for a while. And they were richer for a while when there was a huge credit transfer from north to south. Now the bill's come due and they don't have a hope in the world of paying it. It can not be paid. Either Germany and other rich countries pay it or the Euro is ripped to shreds. One of these two things has to happen. What will it be? I'm not sure. Just glad Sweden was not a part of this foolhardy experiment. All Sweden needs is a free trade and free travel with Europe. That's the only thing any European country needs with the others. The EU offers nothing more than loss of sovereignty. We all need flatter government. More local government that is more accountable. They can harmonize with prevailing standards as long as they are fair, but we don't need wedding cake stacks of government and bureaucracy. The more stacks, the more unaccountable.
16:06 June 16, 2011 by riose
So funny to see so many economists here...

If Germany supported the euro is because it was the only way to export without rising the value of your own currency, which at the ends ruins your exportations, or makes you fall into a dollar trap, as happened with China.

All those who claim economic independence in Sweden, the ECB (yes, the €-bank), as an exceptional action, gave Sweden a 3b€ loan in 2009 to "rescue" their private banking.

If that is independence, I am Ronald McDonald.
17:07 June 16, 2011 by Syftfel
With all the publicity surrounding the Greek financial model, and the arrogance of the bureaucrats in Brussels, Sweden should stay as far away from the Euro that she can. She should also exit the Schengen agreement without further delay. Say No to Brussels, and Yes to a new Nordic Union.
18:04 June 16, 2011 by A Little Worried
Stop. Just for a moment. Think.

If two countries share the same currency, which of them gets the printing press?

The one who gets the printing press can create money as they wish and have the surfs work in exchange for this paper, say building infrastructure in that country such as roads, whatever. This new money causes inflation in BOTH countries. Thus, the country with the money press has new roads for nothing and has actually stolen true wealth from the second country thru inflation. Why can't people see this?
20:42 June 16, 2011 by StuartM
For once I agree with you Syftfel. A Nordic Union would have been a far better idea and it's a shame that Sweden, Denmark and Finland decided to join the EU over further developing their cooperation with the other Nordic states. The EU is a bureaucratic, neoliberal mess which is determined to take away all power from democratically-elected governments and hand it to unelected officials in Brussels who largely take their orders from multinational banks and corporations. It's an organisation of failed states and is full of right-wingers who have no respect for the Nordic welfare model or for the importance of the labour movement which has been traditionally strong in Scandinavia. The people of Sweden and other Nordic states want to retain the social benefits and high wage levels that have been fought for over decades, not be dragged down to the same level as Poland or Romania.
08:09 June 17, 2011 by What?
PLEASE! Do NOT join the EU dollar - for the sake of Pete!

Look at Ireland, Greece, Spain etc. THEY are bankrupt because of having joined!

If Sweden joins the EU dollar we will bleed to death in a very short period of time - paying all the debts and expenses in other EU countries. It is a complete death sentence!

What makes me even more worried is that the US is about to pull a big number and rob the entire population of their wealth by implementing such a idiotic idea; The Amero!

The North American Union! Get Canada and Mexico to join the North America and all the greenbacks are worthless quickly and what will that solve? Ohh... - was it inflation and hyperinflation and that we are soon 15 TRILLION dollars in debt . . . .

They will keep those money presses printing until the economy is crashed and then they will implement the Amero. Didn't work too well over there in Europe did it?
12:08 June 17, 2011 by riose

Because it is not true. Every country have a press, and it is the ECB who gives the order to press more or less money, like it happens in the US.
14:05 June 17, 2011 by technoviking
Yes realizing that one monetary policy for a wide variety of economies is not going to work does not take much thought.

Next step, follow Norway's lead and leave the ridiculous EU altogether and get Sweden's sovereignty back.
15:36 June 17, 2011 by james_g
Yes, stay out of the Euro. Yes, pull out of the EU. Yes to the Nordic Union, but in passing, I could never see much wrong with the original EFTA - European Free Trade Association - either. An association of independent states co-operating with each other and NOT subsuming themselves in a dictatorial, corrupt and undemocratic superstate; UK was part of EFTA too - and just a reminder, the British population did NOT originally vote to join the EU, they * voted not to pull OUT of the European Common Market following a all-pervasive (and lying) campaign massively funded by the ECM and the British government of the time (which was of course already firmly esconced on the gravy train)

(* 'they' being in fact a small majority of the proportion who actually voted!)
18:06 June 17, 2011 by A Little Worried
Riose: fine. So instead of having no press you have a group of people outside your country telling you how much money and inflation your country can create. Well this is great if they tell your country to print more than the others. But what if they allow other countries to print more than Sweden. It is not much different than the scenerio I posted if you think about it. So, instead of hanging, we drown? Still not good.

So when you wrote: A Little Worried OMG, OMG, HOW DIDN'T ANYBODY REALIZED BEFORE well, I suspect you are this person. Think.
20:19 June 17, 2011 by riose
@A Little Worried OMG, again, you nailed it!

How does it work in the US, were the Federal Bank decides what amount of money to print, instead of the individual states?

Or better, what about Sweden? If Sthlm grows and the countryside doesn't, shall we print, or not? Probably the countryside will complain because they are drowning too, and according to what you suggest, it is not legitimate to a central bank to print money if it is not for the good of each of the individuals (which is not the same as the common good).

I recomend you to google: "large euro area advantage" and extrapolate the german case to the swedish case, as both are exporting countries.

Thinking is good. But it is way better to think twice.
21:59 June 17, 2011 by edpe71
The issue with the Euro is that it is a political project. An experiment that has a start and end date for success or failure. Not a great start. It is possible to have a mometary union and default and come back again - Jamaica did just that recently. However, the issue is that a monetary union without a fiscal and political, which the politians could not sell to their voters combined with the fact that didn't want to give up too much soveriegnty means it is on a weak footing. The idea of the EU and Euro is good enough but not with the blueprint they have in mind. Real people with choices and impact need to have a proper say and consequences. Greece on the other is just an expensive Turkey and once you rattle that tree then it ain't long before Spain, Portugal and Italy fall from it. They just ain't equipped for this. But it is interesting to note that no country in history has paid back its debt when it reaches Greek proportions so watch out the US, UK, France and Germany.
09:33 June 18, 2011 by What?
The dollar is crashing and crashing - worth less and less the more fiat money they print.

If you are up to speed on what is happening, in 4 days, on the 22nd of June the US government is supposed to announce if they are going to issue QE3 or not. Quantative Easing = printing another 600 trillion dollars. The QE2 is running out on the 30th of June. The entire Wallstreet is on edge and walking on eggs based on their decision and you will see the results based on what they announce.

If they print more money - it will simply just prolong the slow death of the dollar, as it is getting worth less and less with the inflation.

Check out these graphs and you will understand that the dollar will not be worth the ink that is used to print it with.


In the big picture - this is their "solution" to crash the economy and implement a new currency; The Amero.

This is why Sweden should never agree to accept the Euro dollar as it is crashing country after country.
10:20 June 18, 2011 by A Little Worried
I am not a history buff, but I am pretty sure that never before have any two countries, in any part of the world, in any part of history, said to themselves, 'Hey, why don't we use the same money as this other country over here'. Never. Not once. Why do you think that is? Because to do so it is give up total control of your money system and your sovereignty (unless you are free to print however much you want, when you want, in which case both countries will surely try to out-print each other and hyper-inflation in both nations will ensue.)

Now all of a sudden it's a great idea to share money? Different money separates nations far greater than borders.

"Permit me to issue and control the money of the nation and I care not who makes its laws." Who gave us this little tidbid of advice?

So Riose, when you mentioned the different states in the USA - THEY ARE THE SAME COUNTRY!

When you mentioned Sweden's capital and countryside - THEY ARE THE SAME COUNTRY!

To adopt another's currency is the surely way to merge countries. Sure, they will let you keep you flag and physical border so the masses are left unaware. Finally, look at those countries that did not accept the Euro. You don't see a pattern here?
12:57 June 18, 2011 by riose
@A Little Worried You are totally right again, you are not a history enthusiast.

I am going to give you one example that I find particularly relevant, but you can find many, many more:

Google 'Scandinavian monetary union'.... and that is how the swedish, norwegian and danish crowns were born. Because they used to be the same currency, until WWI :P
14:31 June 18, 2011 by A Little Worried
I stand corrected as I am sure there are other examples too, especially with counties of conquest etc. But why then did the Scandic countries move to having their own currencies I wonder? Why did the US start their own currency? China, Russian, everyone. Because different countries have different currencies. You don't share currencies. Its a rediculous thought!

Question: Do you realize that we are actually debating whether Sweden would be wise to give away their power over their own currency to a foreign entity?
17:05 June 18, 2011 by riose
@A Little Worried :Because the WWI.

After splitting, the swedish krona abandoned the gold standard. During the 20- the swedish krona tried to go back to the gold standard, but then the global depression came and the project was abandoned.

It is not a foreign entity, ECB it is a intergovernmental entity, the same as UN or NATO are.

We are not debating if it would be wise, we are debating if we would like it.

If it was not wise, the government would not have done a referendum about it, the idea would have been discarded since the very beginning.

The results of a referendum does not prove anything neither. 300.000 swedes voted the SD and that is clearly not wise.

And again, i like the idea of a unified, stable currency (and i would like it even more if it were not fiat currency). If you prefer independence, it is legitimate, but please, do not use fallacious claims.
21:07 June 18, 2011 by A Little Worried
So I looked up the Scandinavian monetary union. Used Wiki.

They did not share a currency (I suppose you are not a huge history buff either are you). Instead they pegged their currencies to one another through gold. They were gold backed currencies! Therefore these were not even fiat currencies we are talking about today. Its a totally different (and far healthier) animal (of which you agree). Nations CAN share gold back common currencies because no one can abuse their printing presses, as they need physical gold to back any and all new money printed. Therefore, it is you making the fallacious claims now.

But alas, I must digress, as you have surely once again stopped reading what I am saying (its all rather simple stuff) and merely attempting to formulate your next retort. Plus, you might be doing a better job at arguing my points than I am.
21:37 June 18, 2011 by riose
@A Little Worried

The way to do seigniorage in a gold backed currency is as simple as saying: "If you come tomorrow to the bank, instead of getting 1gram of gold for your note, you can get only 0.5grams."

Et voilá! Now you can print twice as many notes.

Because the gold in not in the notes, but in the banks vault, and the bank decides how much gold the krona note is worth.

I am happy to see that this time you went to the wiki before commenting. Next time, check related articles such as gold standard, to avoid showing yourself up once again. I have proven you wrong 4 times so far.

And yes, they shared a currency: 1SEK=1DKK=1NOK. They had one before (Swedish riksdaler), and they changed to the common currency. They became different after splitting.
22:36 June 18, 2011 by A Little Worried
You proved me wrong, four times?

What, like this little tidbit?

"And yes, they shared a currency: 1SEK=1DKK=1NOK"

These are pegged, not the same. Had you read what I wrote I would have already explained this too you. That is why the letters SEK is different than DKK is different than NOK. BEcause they are different currencies (albeit pegged to gold). What is wrong with you?

You are fasinating. Each time I write, I explain how you are incorrect. Not only do you ignore each of these points, you somehow believe you are correcting me?

Or perhaps you corrected me by explining how the Scandinavian monetary union is an example of shared currencies, but I WAS THE ONE TO EXPLAIN TO YOU THAT THIS IS INCORRECT!
00:34 June 19, 2011 by riose
So now you are the one explaining that i am incorrect!

First you said that other people print you money > False

People outside your country tells which amount to print > False

Then you say two countries never shared currency > Totally false

THEN, that if a currency is backed with gold, more money cannot be printed >False

The unified currency was the krona in Sweden or krone in Norway and Denmark, but they were a single currency. Read the wiki for the Swedish krona, Richard. The krona became swedish krona after splitting.

I think from now on I will call you Dick. It is more informal, and suits you better.
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