Today is the 25th. Before Sunday, the day of rest, and Saturday, the day of Sabbath, the 25th in Sweden is the most important day. It is payday for the month for everyone across Sweden. You get paid on the 25th or no day.
Because this payday occurs on a Friday, you can be sure across Sweden that people will be partying and bar hopping a little extra harder. And shopping more this weekend. Lots of spending.
The splurging over the payday weekend, lönehelg, always made me wonder about the household savings rate in Sweden. Turns out it isn’t so bad, around 12% household net savings in Sweden. In comparison, savings in Japan dropped from double digits in the 1980s-2000 (not shown) to just 3.78% the past year. Surprisingly, American households hold a positive net savings, even if just barely. And well, the Brits really need a class or two on savings and income.
What does this mean for us in Sweden? Not much except that in the cities people do like to spend money, some are so poor at financing they barely make it month to month. And with the Swedish government enjoying our hard earned tax salary, save an extra krona or two. Besides, we can make fun of the Norwegians with their negative savings.
Household savings from the major OCED countries (United States, United Kingdom, Japan, Germany, France, Norway, Sweden)
But for all of you who don’t have a job and a lovely paycheck to look forward to, don’t fret. The unemployment rate for young people (under 25) is 25% in Sweden, one of the highest of the developed world. The only countries with higher unemployment are Arab nations, (p)IGS, and extreme poverty nations.
Guesses to why Sweden has such high unemployment stems from: 1) lack of interest by young people to find jobs; 2) inability to find jobs because employers do not want inexperienced people; 3) the skills possessed by new generation is not enough to be competitive in the work force.
As a +25 oldie, I’ll be doing the right thing in Sweden by celebrating my lönehelg at the Stureplan bars.