Sweden’s Riksbank ‘to raise rates this month’

Sweden's central bank could raise its core interest rate as early as next month, according to one of the country's leading banks.

Sweden's Riksbank 'to raise rates this month'
Sweden's Riksbank central bank is expected to raise interest rates today. Photo: TT

In its latest economic prognosis, Swedbank predicted that the Riksbank, Sweden’s central bank, would raise interest rates by 25 points this April to 0.25 percent, with a steady succession of six further rises taking base interest rates to 1.5 percent by April 2023.

“We need to get used to the idea of higher rates,” the company’s chief economist, Mattias Persson, wrote in a comment. “The high inflation is going to make the Riksbank tighten up monetary policy much faster than what we had previously expected and to raise rates as early as April. At the same time we cannot rule out that the Riksbank gives a clear signal in April of a coming rates rise and then increases rates by 50 points at its June meeting. 

Persson said that the resulting increase in mortgage rates would significantly reduce the real disposable income of potential buyers of property, which would keep property prices flat over the next year. 

The bank expects consumer inflation of as higher as six percent during the spring and five percent over the whole year. 

Member comments

  1. Brazil is paying 11.75% per year with an inflation of 10.5%. Who will buy bonds in Sweden to receive 0.25% with an inflation of 5%?

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Swedish bank’s IT fault puts customer accounts in the red

A technical problem at Sweden's Swedbank on Thursday night gave customers a nasty surprise, with their account balances inexplicably going negative, payments impossible, and Swish payments no longer working.

Swedish bank's IT fault puts customer accounts in the red

By 11.30pm, more than 2,000 Swedbank customers had reported the fault to the site Downdetector, and the problem was still not solved by 17.00pm on Friday. 

“We have an ongoing IT disruption where certain customers see an incorrect balance on their accounts,” a message on the bank’s app read. “The reason is a planned update to our internal systems which went wrong. We apologise, of course, for that and are working as quickly as possible to fix the problem.” 

The Swish payment service has also been affected, with the service, which is owned collectively by Swedish banks, reporting on its site that there was a “technical disruption at Swedbank and Sparbank which might affect Swish payments from these banks”. 

Some Swedbank customers posted their negative account balances on Twitter, expressing shock at the incorrect figures. 

The disruption comes at the worst possible time for many Swedes. Many people are paid on the 25th of the month, meaning this Friday marks the start of the payday weekend. Many will have also scheduled their bill payments for this Friday. 

Marko Saric from Malmö saw his account balance drop by 1.2 million kronor, going half a million kronor into the red. 

“It’s just totally crazy,” he told SVT. “We were going to go out and shop for the weekend. It’s lovely weather and the kids want to go out, but we can’t use our card. We’ve got no cash. Everything is in the bank.” 

“You’re just completely blocked. Colleagues need to make emergency food parcels for you. It’s just crazy that something like this should happen.” 

In its statement, the bank assured customers that their money was “secure”, and that the bank still had the correct information on what their account balance should be. 

“Customers who feel that they have suffered economic damage as a result of the disruption should contact the bank,” the message said.