Consumer lending growth

Swedish mortgage lending growth has stabilised at around 7-8 per cent, while consumer lending growth has risen considerably in recent months. In June consumer lending rose to 9.4 per cent at an annual rate, the highest figure recorded since 2008.

Economists are concerned by the trend, warning that unsecured loans could lie behind the growth.

Banks prepared to lend more

Three of four Swedish bank managers expect to increase lending to companies this year, according to Almi’s coming Lending Indicator. Carina Nordström, head of business areas at Almi, says, “It is very positive that the banks have a bright outlook for 2017.” She also points out that Almi’s lending reached record levels in 2016, mainly to innovative growth companies.

However Günther Mårder, CEO of the Swedish Federation of Business Owners, believes that although many expect credit growth because the Swedish economy is strong, lots experience difficulties with banks and the smallest companies are finding it the toughest.