Sweden, officially the Kingdom of Sweden, is a Scandinavian country in Northern Europe. It borders Norway to the west and Finland to the east and is connected to Denmark in the southwest by a bridge-tunnel across the Oresund. Sweden is part of the geographical area of Fennoscandia. Since then, Sweden has been at peace, maintaining an official policy of neutrality in foreign affairs. The union with Norway was peacefully dissolved in 1905, leading to Sweden's current borders. Though it was formally neutral through both world wars, Sweden engaged in humanitarian efforts, such as taking in refugees from German-occupied Europe. After the end of the Cold War, Sweden joined the European Union on 1 January 1995, but declined NATO membership.
Today, Sweden is a constitutional monarchy and a parliamentary democracy, with the Monarch as the head of state. The capital city is Stockholm, which is also the most populous city in the country. Legislative power is vested in the 349-member unicameral Riksdag. Sweden is a unitary state, currently divided into 21 counties and 290 municipalities. Sweden maintains a Nordic social welfare system that provides universal health care and tertiary education for its citizens. It has the world's eighth-highest per capita income and ranks highly in numerous metrics of national performance, including quality of life, health, education, and protection of civil liberties, economic competitiveness, equality, prosperity, and human development. Sweden has been a member of the European Union since 1 January 1995 but declined Eurozone membership following a referendum. It is also a member of the United Nations, the Nordic Council, Council of Europe, the World Trade Organization and the Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD).
Sweden has among the EU’s lowest levels of national debt, low and stable inflation and a healthy banking system. But this wasn’t always the case. The Swedish economy used to suffer from low growth and high inflation, and the Swedish krona was repeatedly devalued. Sweden was also hit by a deep financial crisis in the early 1990s. Banks became unstable and two were nationalized, unemployment rose rapidly, government spending got out of control, and so did Sweden’s national debt. Sweden has among the EU’s lowest levels of national debt, low and stable inflation and a healthy banking system. But this wasn’t always the case. The Swedish economy used to suffer from low growth and high inflation, and the Swedish krona was repeatedly devalued. Sweden was also hit by a deep financial crisis in the early 1990s. Banks became unstable and two were nationalized, unemployment rose rapidly, government spending got out of control, and so did Sweden’s national debt. Sweden’s present economic and social prosperity was built on the lessons learned from the financial crisis in the early 1990s. Governments pursued reforms and fiscal sustainability became institutionalized. Stable economic policies combine with competitiveness, innovation and an open approach to trade to make Sweden a model for economic success.
|Agriculture||Barely, wheat, sugar beet, meat & milk.|
|Manufacture||Machinery, petroleum, chemicals, motor vehicles, iron & steel|
|Services (Including financial)||65.4% (2017 est.)|
|LM Ericsson||Technology hardware & equipment|
|Volvo Group||Capital goods|
|Atlas Copco||Capital goods|
The Stockholm Stock Exchange operating under the brand name Nasdaq Stockholm is a stock exchange located in Frihamnen, Stockholm, Sweden. Founded in 1863, it has become the primary securities exchange of the Nordic countries. More than 300 companies have been listed for trading. The Stockholm Stock Exchange was acquired by futures exchange OM in 1998. After OM merged with the Helsinki Stock Exchange to form what is now OMX in 2003, the Stockholm and Helsinki exchanges' operations were merged. Since 2008, the Stockholm Exchange has been part of the NASDAQ OMX Group. The exchange operates under the legal name Nasdaq OMX Stockholm AB. Prior to the introduction of electronic trading on 1 June 1990, all trading was conducted on the floor of the Stockholm Stock Exchange Building.
Sweden has had an economic model in the post-World War II era, characterized by close cooperation between the government, labor unions, and corporations. The Swedish economy has extensive and universal social benefits funded by high taxes, close to 50% of GDP. In the 1980s, a real estate and financial bubble formed, driven by a rapid increase in lending. A restructuring of the tax system, in order to emphasize low inflation combined with an international economic slowdown in the early 1990s, caused the bubble to burst. Between 1990 and 1993 GDP went down by 5% and unemployment skyrocketed, causing the worst economic crisis in Sweden since the 1930s. According to an analysis by George Berglund published in Computer Sweden in 1992, the investment level decreased drastically for information technology and computing equipment, except in the financial and banking sector, the part of the industry that created the crisis. The investment levels for IT and computers were restored as early as 1993. In 1992 there was a run on the currency, the central bank briefly jacking up interest to 500% in an unsuccessful effort to defend the currency's fixed exchange rate. Total employment fell by almost 10% during the crisis.
A real estate boom ended in a bust. The government took over nearly a quarter of banking assets at a cost of about 4% of the nation's GDP. This was known colloquially as the " Stockholm Solution" In 2007, the United States Federal Reserve noted, " In the early 1970s, Sweden had one of the highest income levels in Europe; today, its lead has all but disappeared...So, even well-managed financial crises don't really have a happy ending" The welfare system that had been growing rapidly since the 1970s could not be sustained with a falling GDP, lower employment and larger welfare payments. In 1994 the government budget deficit exceeded 15% of GDP. The response of the government was to cut spending and institute a multitude of reforms to improve Sweden's competitiveness. When the international economic outlook improved combined with a rapid growth in the IT sector, which Sweden was well positioned to capitalize on, the country could emerge from the crisis.
The crisis of the 1990s was by some viewed as the end of the much-buzzed welfare model called " Svenska modellen" literally " The Swedish Model" as it proved that governmental spending at the levels previously experienced in Sweden was not long term sustainable in a global open economy. Much of the Swedish Model's acclaimed advantages had to be viewed because of the post-WWII special situation, which left Sweden untouched when competitors' economies were comparatively weak. However, the reforms enacted during the 1990s seem to have created a model in which extensive welfare benefits can be maintained in a global economy.
The earliest historical mention of Sweden is found in Tacitus's Germania, where reference is made to the powerful king and strong fleet of the Sviones. In the 11th century, Olaf Sköttkonung became the first Swedish king to be baptized as a Christian. Around 1400, an attempt was made to unite Sweden, Norway, and Denmark into one kingdom, but this led to bitter strife between the Danes and the Swedes. In 1520, the Danish king Christian II conquered Sweden and in the “Stockholm Bloodbath” put leading Swedish personages to death. Gustavus Vasa (1523–1560) broke away from Denmark and fashioned the modern Swedish state. He also confiscated property from the Roman Catholic Church in Sweden to pay Sweden's war debts. The king justified his actions on the basis of Martin Luther's doctrines, which were being accepted nationwide with royal encouragement. The Lutheran Swedish church was eventually adopted as the state church.
Sweden played a leading role in the second phase (1630–1635) of the Thirty Years' War (1618–1648). By the Treaty of Westphalia (1648), Sweden obtained western Pomerania and some neighboring territory on the Baltic. In 1700, a coalition of Russia, Poland, and Denmark united against Sweden and by the Peace of Nystad (1721) forced it to relinquish Livonia, Ingria, Estonia, and parts of Finland. Sweden emerged from the Napoleonic Wars with the acquisition of Norway from Denmark and with a new royal dynasty stemming from Marshal Jean Bernadotte of France, who became King Charles XIV (1818–1844). The artificial union between Sweden and Norway led to an uneasy relationship, and the union was finally dissolved in 1905. Sweden maintained a position of neutrality in both world wars.
Bertil Gotthard Ohlin
(Astronomer & physicist)
The krona (SEK) has been the currency of Sweden since 1873. The ISO code "SEK" and currency sign "kr" are in common use; the former precedes or follows the value, the latter usually follows it but, especially in the past, it sometimes preceded the value. In English, the currency is sometimes referred to as the Swedish crown, as krona literally means crown in Swedish. The Swedish krona was the 11th most traded currency in the world by value in April 2013. One krona is subdivided into 100 ore (singular and plural; when referring to the currency unit itself, however, the plural definite form is Oren). However, all ore coins have been discontinued as of 30 September 2010. Goods can still be priced in ore, but all sums are rounded to the nearest krona when paying with cash.
After dissolution of the monetary union in August 1914, Sweden, Denmark, and Norway all decided to keep the names of their respective and now separate currencies. Between 1873 and 1876, coins in denominations of 1, 2, 5, 10, 25, and 50 ore and 1, 2, 10, and 20 kronor were introduced. The 1, 2 and 5 ore were in bronze, the 10, 25, 50 ore and 1 krona and 2 kronor were in silver, and the 10 and 20 kronor were in gold. Gold 5 kronor coins were added in 1881. Metal shortages due to World War II again led to changes in the Swedish coinage. Between 1940 and 1947, the nickel-bronze 10, 25 and 50 ore were again issued. In 1942, iron again replaced bronze (until 1952) and the silver content of the other coins was reduced. In 1962, cupronickel replaced silver in the 10 ore, 25 ore, and 50 ore coins. In 1971, the 1 and 2 ore, as well as the 2 kronor coins ceased production. The size of the 5 ore coin was reduced in 1972. In 1984, production of the 5 and 25 ore coins came to an end, followed by that of the 10 ore in 1991. In 1991, aluminum-brass ("Nordic gold") 10 kronor coins were introduced. Previous 10 kronor coins are not legal tender. Also in 1991, bronze-colored 50 ore coins were introduced.
In 1971, the 1 and 2 ore, as well as the 2 kronor coins ceased production. The size of the 5 ore coin was reduced in 1972. In 1984, production of the 5 and 25 ore coins came to an end, followed by that of the 10 ore in 1991. In 1991, aluminum-brass ("Nordic gold") 10 kronor coins were introduced. Previous 10 kronor coins are not legal tender. Also in 1991, bronze-colored 50 ore coins were introduced.
|National Song||"Du gamla, Du fria"|
|Currency||Swedish krona (SEK)|
|GDP / GDP Rank||498.121 Billion USD|
|GDP Growth Rate||4.1 Percent|
|GDP Per Captial||$49836.222 (PPP)|
< 1.0% Hindus
< 1.0% Buddhists
< 1.0% Jews
< 1.0% Other Religions
Indigenous Population: Swedes With Finnish And Sami Minorities
King – Carl XVI Gustaf
Prime Minister – Stefan Löfven
|Website||Go to the web|
|Public Debt||41.653 Percent|
|Unemployment Rate||7.093 Percent|
|Labor Force (Occupation)||-|