The coronavirus pandemic has resulted in an exceptional stress for the real economy. Governments, central banks and supervisory authorities have implemented significant measures to dampen the crisis. This has helped to reduce the uncertainty on the financial markets. But we are in still in the middle of the crisis, and there is considerable uncertainty going forward.
The low interest rates are expected to remain low for a longer period of time. It could lead to greater risk-taking among various actors, and increased challenges for insurance undertakings.
Both the global and the Swedish economies appear to be slowing down. Low interest rates – which have resulted in high risk-taking and rising asset prices – are expected to remain low for a prolonged period of time. Resilience in the Swedish financial system is satisfactory in general. However, even if the banks’ resilience is satisfactory overall, FI makes the assessment that they need more capital to cover the risks in their lending to commercial real estate firms.
This FI Analysis describes how Swedish covered bonds function, how the regulation governing the cover pool is designed and how the cover pool is affected by a fall in house prices.
The economy continues to be strong, both in Sweden and globally, but it is now showing signs of a slow-down. Interest rates have been low for a long period of time, which has led to high risk-taking and rising asset prices. As a result, the risks in the financial system are elevated. The resilience in the Swedish financial system is satisfactory in general but continued high growth in debt fuelled by lending and investments related to residential property and commercial real estate require monitoring.
The Swedish economy continues to be strong, and resilience in the financial system is satisfactory. However, a long period of low interest rates and strong growth has resulted in an elevated risk appetite, high asset prices and high debt globally, among Swedish households and on the commercial real estate market. The high level of indebtedness makes the financial sector more sensitive to shocks, and, if necessary, FI will take additional measures to strengthen the resilience.
Swedish banks are relatively strong, but they continue to be vulnerable to disruptions on the financial markets, and the development within the Euro zone continues to represent a risk to the Swedish financial system.
Finansinspektionen’s (FI’s) 2012 risk report 2012 continues to focus on unease on financial markets, where the greatest risk to the Swedish financial system is still a deepened sovereign debt crisis in Europe. Because of low market rates, life insurance undertakings are under pressure, and FI now sees a risk of consumers ending up in a squeeze as the firms review their commitments. This year too, FI views the financial advice market with concern. In this market, consumers are being invited to invest in complex products while advisors receive commissions.
Sweden has remained relatively stable in a turbulent period but during this time the risk level in the Swedish financial system has also risen. The uncertainty in surrounding markets has meant that banks’ liquidity risks and the impact of low interest rates on life insurance undertakings remain in focus. Finansinspektionen also believes there is a risk that the sale of complex products to consumers will increase.
Finansinspektionen believes the risk level in the Swedish financial sector is lower than last year. Both Sweden’s economy and the situation on the financial market have improved. However, the uncertainty present in foreign markets represents a potential threat to Sweden’s development.