Kiruna: Aerial views show mining town in northern Sweden
Sweden may be seen by some as paradise on Earth, especially since its people are amongst the happiest people on Earth, but the reality of things reveals more than meets the eye.
A recent report by Statista reveals that Sweden is actually one of the most debt-riddled countries in the world — and that it’s third only behind the Netherlands and Denmark. Loans, mortgages, and credit card debt are crippling the Swedes into a life of near indentured servitude, and according to one marketing expert, it’s become quite the problem.
“That Swedes’ debt is the third highest in Europe is is problematic,” said Pontus Wiss of Likvidum, which aims to help Swedes get out of debt.
“We must navigate these financial waters carefully to ensure a sustainable future for generations to come.”
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The debt was measured relative to the average Swedish income, and it was determined that the average resident of Sweden has a debt-to-income ratio of 180 percent.
That means that for every $1 a Swedish person makes, they owe $1.80 back to their lenders — and personal loans are the biggest culprit.
“It is imperative for banks and lenders in Sweden to prioritize responsible lending in our marketing and communication regarding private loans,” said Wiss.
Interestingly, however, Solvenia, Hungary, and Poland have the least amount of debt-to-income ratio.
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Wiss is joining the chorus of brokers who have demanded that the Swedish government do its part to counter-act over-indebtedness.
He says that the laws in Sweden, as they exist now, are designed to be predatory in nature, and he wants that to change
“The Swedish government has put forward a proposal for a debt and credit register to counteract risky lending and over-indebtedness,” he said. “We at Likvidum as loan brokers welcome such measures to strengthen consumer protection.”
It remains to be seen, however, whether these laws will ultimately be passed.
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