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Savings Barometer, 1st quarter 2020

Major bank deposits and high levels of household savings in the first quarter

Statistical news from Statistics Sweden 2020-05-20 9.30

Households’ financial savings amounted to SEK 127 billion in the first quarter of 2020. Households’ net deposits in bank accounts and net sales in funds were at record levels during the quarter. Despite high levels of savings, households’ financial net wealth decreased by SEK 1 123 billion.

In the first quarter of 2020, new savings in financial assets amounted to SEK 177 billion, while liabilities increased by SEK 50 billion, which resulted in SEK 127 billion in positive financial savings. This is the highest level of financial savings ever noted in a first quarter. Households’ savings were mainly in bank accounts, with net deposits amounting to SEK 86 billion.

Households sold funds and wealth decreased

Households’ net sales of funds amounted to SEK 52 billion in the first quarter of 2020, which is the largest amount ever of net sales of funds. Net sales of equity funds and other funds, including fund-of funds, hedge funds and other funds, amounted to SEK 24 billion and SEK 27 billion respectively. In the same period, households’ net sales of listed shares amounted to SEK 6 billion.

Shares and funds (left) and the Stockholm Stock Exchange (right), transactions and stock market trend, SEK billions and percent

Shares and funds (left) and the Stockholm Stock Exchange (right), transactions and stock market trend, SEK billions and percent

In recent quarters, households have, to a greater extent, purchased shares and funds when the stock market has risen and sold when the stock market has fallen. According to the Affärsvärlden General Index, the stock market fell by 18.4 percent in the first quarter of 2020. This is the largest decrease in a single quarter since the stock market fell by 19.8 percent in the third quarter of 2011. In the first quarter of 2020, households’ net sales of listed shares and funds amounted to SEK 58 billion, which can be compared with SEK 15 billion in the third quarter of 2011.

As the stock market fell sharply in the first quarter, households’ financial wealth decreased, since large parts of households’ financial assets are share-based. Households’ financial net wealth fell by 10 percent in the first quarter of 2020 compared with the previous quarter, which corresponds to a decrease of SEK 1 123 billion.

High level of savings in bank accounts

In recent years, households’ net deposits in bank accounts have been substantial, despite a low interest rate. In the first quarter of 2020, net deposits in bank accounts reached an unprecedented level and amounted to SEK 86 billion. The second highest level of savings in bank accounts in a corresponding quarter was noted in 2007, when households’ savings amounted to SEK 38 billion.

Net deposits in bank accounts, first quarter, transactions, SEK billions

Net deposits in bank accounts, first quarter, transactions, SEK billions

There is a connection between households’ net deposits in bank accounts and net purchases of funds. In the first quarter of 2020, both major net deposits in bank accounts and major net sales of funds were noted. In the fourth quarter of 2019, the pattern was reversed, with low net deposits in bank accounts and large net purchases of funds.

Net purchases of new tenant-owned apartments decreased

Households’ net purchases of new tenant-owned apartments amounted to SEK 9 billion in the first quarter of 2020, which is the lowest level of net purchases for a first quarter in the past five years. Compared with the fourth quarter of 2019, net purchases in the first quarter of 2020 were barely half as large. New tenant-owned apartments consist of apartments with changing rights of tenancy to tenant-owned apartments and newly produced tenant-owned apartments. Households’ ownership of tenant-owned apartments is a financial asset and is included in the Savings Barometer. One- or two-dwelling buildings with ownership rights are not included, since they constitute real assets. Households’ assets in tenant-owned apartments amounted to SEK 2 927 billion at the end of the quarter.

Annual growth rate of loans rose

Households’ net borrowing, that is, new loans minus amortisations, amounted to SEK 51 billion in the first quarter of 2020, which is higher than in the corresponding quarter a year ago. During the quarter, the annual growth rate in loans increased and amounted to 4.9 percent. In the five most recent quarters, the annual growth rate of loans has hovered around five percent, which is a slowdown from 2016, when the growth rate was eight percent.

Households’ loans, which consist primarily of loans in bank and housing credit institutions and student loans, amounted to SEK 4 483 billion at the end of the first quarter.

Households’ loans, transactions (left) and annual growth rate (right), SEK billions and percent

Households’ loans, transactions (left) and annual growth rate (right), SEK billions and percent

Source: Statistics Sweden

Definitions and explanations

Financial savings is calculated as the difference between transactions in financial assets and transactions in liabilities.

The Savings Barometer comprises a preliminary calculation of the household sector. A more complete calculation of the household sector is presented in conjunction with the publication of the Financial Accounts.

The statistics in the Savings Barometer concerning households’ funds is distinct from the statistics on the product Investment funds, assets and liabilities. The Savings Barometer includes ownership in investment fund shares registered in nominee accounts. Furthermore, households’ retained dividend payments are recorded as purchases of new investment fund shares.

The Savings Barometer does not publish any revisions other than the revisions introduced in the latest publication of the Financial Accounts. In connection with this publication of the Savings Barometer, the time series will be updated from the first quarter 2016 onward with the revisions introduced in the Financial Accounts’ publication on 19 March.

More detailed descriptions of major revisions are described in the statistical news on Financial Accounts:

Financial accounts, quarterly and annual

Next publishing will be

2020-08-27 at 09:30.

Statistical Database

More information is available in the Statistical Database

Feel free to use the facts from this statistical news but remember to state Source: Statistics Sweden.

Statistical agency

Swedish Financial Supervisory Authority

Address
Box 7821
103 97 Stockholm

Producer

Statistics Sweden, National Accounts

Address
Box 24 300
104 51 Stockholm
E-mail
nrinfo@scb.se

Enquiries

Frida Frånlund

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+46 10 479 58 25
E-mail
frida.franlund@scb.se

Nicolai Nystrand

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+46 10 479 45 45
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nicolai.nystrand@scb.se