Job losses continue to mount across Sweden

The weak economy appears to be costing more Swedes their jobs, as more than 2,400 redundancies have been announced so far in September.

And that figure only accounts for the announcements by large companies which have been covered by the mainstream media.

In addition, there are an unknown number companies who are letting go one or a few employees at a time – a reality which is just as tough and depressing for those affected, but which never makes the headlines.

Exactly how many jobs will disappear altogether won’t be know for sure until figures for September are presented by Sweden’s Public Employment Service (Arbetsförmedlingen).

During September of last year, companies told 2,951 workers they would lose their jobs, a figure likely to be surpassed in 2008.

The current wave of job losses actually started back in August 2008, when 4,045 people from 60 different workplaces were given notice, nearly double the corresponding figure of 2,197 for August of last year.

Several of September’s dismissals may have something to do with people delaying purchases of new cars, boats, and other large consumer goods until economic conditions improve.

Automotive industry organization BIL Sweden, for example, announced on Wednesday it was lowering sales projections for 2008, citing the weaker economy and slower new car sales since the summer.

But the job losses are cutting across several sectors, with Volvo Cars shedding 900 positions and boat maker Nimbus is shuttering its Gotland operations, costing 226 jobs.

In addition, outdoor power equipment maker Husqvarna plans to eliminate 300 jobs in Sweden from a total of 850 worldwide.

And as larger manufacturers’ problems persist, some expect smaller companies which supply the likes of Volvo and Saab will soon announce their own layoffs.