Sweden prepares for bumpy Brexit ride

Sweden prepares for bumpy Brexit ride
Swedish artists Markoolio and Andreas Johnson try out the new rollercoaster, Kvasten, at Gröna Lund, Stockholm, 2007. Photo: Janerik Henriksson/TT
Sweden’s financial institutions are girding for wide-reaching market turbulence if Britain votes to leave to the European Union, the Swedish Finance Inspectorate (FI) warns.

A Leave vote on June 23rd could set off a series of reactions in financial markets, according to the minutes of the Swedish financial security council’s June meeting.

Brexit could weaken the pound, prompt investors to flee to safer shores, and potentially upset financial markets to the extent that Sweden takes a hit, the council said. 

Swedish government agencies have a contingency plan in place to deal with any fallout if Britain opts out of the EU, the council revealed. The finance inspectorate has teamed up with the central bank and the Swedish national debt office to follow developments in the UK and to take action if necessary. 

The agencies would not be drawn on details of the contingency plan or what sort turbulence they expect. 

Central bank spokeswoman Susanne Meyer was also tight-lipped, but said the bank would communicate further “if we need to take action”.

Mattias Persson, chief economist at the debt office, said his agency wasn’t speculating on the outcome. 

“In the short term a no (Leave) could lead to uncertainty on the financial market. We have a contingency, we’re following what’s happening and are in close contact with other agencies, and we’ll have additional staffing if necessary.” 

A huge majority of Swedes want Britain to stay in the European Union, and more than half think Brexit would harm Sweden.