December 4, 2007


Sweden's rich 'are richer than we thought' (The Local, 4 Dec 07)

The richest one percent of people in Sweden own up to 40 percent of the country's personal wealth, according to a report due to be released soon.

The report's authors, from the Research Institute of Industrial Economics in Stockholm, say that the richest one percent of Swedes have a combined fortune of 1,800 billion kronor ($281 billion). The figure corresponds to about 32 percent of private wealth in the country.

The study's results differ markedly from official figures. Statistics Sweden's calculations put the size of the fortune controlled by the richest one percent at 19 percent. The difference is due to the fact that the official figures do not include wealth tied up in family-owned companies, according to Dagens Nyheter.

Posted by Orrin Judd at December 4, 2007 11:56 AM

I have heard arguments that family-owned firms tend to do a better job at long-term planning than publicly held ones. I haven't seen statistics one way or the other, but it certainly seems plausible...

Posted by: Mike Earl at December 4, 2007 12:23 PM

Ikea, for example, is a complicated mix of interlocking directorates and foundations charted in several different countries, all eventually controlled by the same family. It's all to avoid Sweden's punishing taxes, of course.

Posted by: John Thacker at December 4, 2007 1:38 PM
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