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Financial Outlook

The economy will expand by 2.8% in 2014 according to EU Commission estimates. Weak growth in the eurozone has weighed on Sweden, which relies on exports for half its economic output, and the pickup in the European Union and the United States is expected to drive growth over the year. In 2013 the economy grew by around 1.7% according to government estimates. In December the central bank cut its key rate by 0.25 percentage points to 0.75%, citing lower than expected inflation. Although the government has implemented austerity measures and the debt to GDP ratio is much lower than in other EU member states, the finance ministry’s official forecasts indicate that Sweden will not achieve a budget surplus target of 1% of GDP until 2017. Consumers, meanwhile, have amassed record debt burdens. Households owed almost 180% of disposable income by the end of 2013, a level the government and central bank say cannot be allowed to rise. Unemployment fell to 8% in November 2013, down from a peak of 9.3% in April 2010.

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Further reading on Sweden

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