Swedish News:

Increased salaries for bank execs. Tourists from East spend more. Norway's prisoners to Sweden. Swedish youth drink less. 

  • The latest export from Norway to Sweden? Prisoners? Norway has long lines of prisoners waiting to serve their sentences, but not enough prison space and thus want to rent space in Sweden.
  • Increased salaries for bank execs
    Several of the executives of the bigger banks in Sweden increased their salaries last year. The one who increased her salary the most was SEB’s CEO Annika Falkengren, who did so with all of 54%. (The increase mostly constitutes bonus payments and additional board assignments representing and additional $1 million on top of a salary of $1.2 million) The bank executives' payments and other added bonuses have been criticized in Sweden in light of recent years' increased bank fees.

  • Did you ever hear of a 54% increase in salary? The CEO of Skandinaviska Enskilda Banken (SEB), Annika Falkengren did – namely her own.
  • Tourists from East spend more
    Ferry tourists from Poland, Finland, Russia, and the Baltic States spend ten times more money in Stockholm than tourists on the luxury summer cruise ships. Poles spend the most, and are also the ferry tourists who tend to stay in Sweden the longest. The cruise ship passengers spend half a billion SEK ($768,000), and the ferry tourists ten times that, according to Dagens Nyheter. The ferry tourists spending also lead to 4,000 jobs, according to a report from Stockholms Hamnar.

  • Ferry tourists from countries like Poland, spend more money in Stockholm than tourists on the more expensive cruise ships in summer time do.
  • Norway's prisoners to Sweden
    Swedish prisons are pretty much empty these days, which may make them ripe for receiving Norwegian prisoners. Norway's export of prisoners may actually become an actuality for Sweden. The Norwegian Minister for Justice Anders Anundsen contacted his Swedish colleague Beatrice Ask: ”We cannot live with the current situation in the country. We have long lines with people waiting to serve their sentence, and that’s why we’re in close contact with Sweden to figure out if we may rent prison space there,” he told Ask according to the news agency NTB.

  • The trend continues: More and more young Swedes say no to alcohol.
  • Swedish youth drink less
    The trend continues: Young Swedes drink less alcohol. There are regional differences, though. ”The youths in Skåne and the rest of southern Sweden drink the most,” says Isabella Gripe who works as an investigator at Centralförbundet för alkohol- och narkotikaupplysning (CAN). Youths in northern Sweden drink the least. CAN’s survey of Swedish students’ drug habits was presented recently. Of the polled 9th graders (15-year olds), 47% said they’d drunk alcohol at some point during the past year, which is the lowest percentage since CAN began their surveys in 1971. And even among the 17-year olds, the number has dropped. When CAN began looking at that age group in 2004, 90% had drunk alcohol during the year. The number today is 77%. Isabella Gripe believes the decrease can be explained with an older debut age, and that the pattern for young people has changed. ”There are places and ways to socialize that don’t need to include alcohol, like social media,” she says. That the alcohol consumption has gone down is something Maria Strömgren, alcohol and drug coordinator at Luleå Municipality, agrees with. ”We’ve had a positive downward trend during the last few years among the 15-year olds and I understand the trend continues,” she says. Strömgren believes the downward trend can be explained by a combination of different measures. For instance, several campaigns that highlight the issue of young people and alcohol, and support given to parents so that they can resist the pressure to buy alcohol for minors more easily. ”We know that the attitude of the parents is important,” she says.