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Sweden's loss of 'faith'

Sweden’s loss of ‘faith’

World economy

SAO PAOLO | By Marcus Nunes | According to Per Bylund, “during the recent financial crisis, Sweden has emerged as one of very few financially sound economies.” However, now the country successfully rolled back its unsustainable but world-renowned welfare state.

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Per Bylund argues for fiscal consolidation but forgets the important role of monetary policy:

Since 1992, Sweden has, across the board, seen consistent government cutbacks while increasing restrictions on welfare policies, deregulating markets, and privatizing former government monopolies. The country has instituted an overall new incentive structure in society making it more favorable to work. The national debt tumbled from almost 80 percent of GDP in 1995 to only 35 percent in 2010.

In other words, Sweden successfully rolled back its unsustainable but world-renowned welfare state. Despite Krugman’s wishful thinking, this is the real reason for Sweden’s success in riding out the present financial crisis.

Sweden surely got its act together in the early 1990s. The IMF numbers are a bit different but there´s no doubt a significant fiscal consolidation took place. The charts for the Government Debt/GDP and Government Balance/GDP ratios attest.

Read the whole article here.

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