Bumper Friday for krona and stocks

The Stockholm stock exchange and the krona both hit record levels for the year on Friday as several economic indicators point to an upswing in Sweden's economic fortunes.

By close of trading the Stockholm bourse was up 2.7 percent to 281.4 points, the highest level since August last year.

Banks, trucks and engineering firms led the charge, with SEB, Volvo, Scania, Sandvik and Atlas Copco all recording significant share price increases.

The OMXS index was in a buoyant mood all afternoon on news of Federal Reserve chairman Ben Bernanke’s bright forecast for the US economy.

The Swedish krona also hit an annual high on a day in which finance minster Anders Borg expressed optimism about Sweden’s GDP growth. The currency recorded record highs for the year against both the euro (10.09 kronor) and the dollar (7.02).

News agency TT said observers it had spoken to believed the embattled currency may now have crossed an important threshold on its path to recovery.

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Norway central bank mulls stepping in to prop up falling krona

The central bank of Norway said Thursday it was considering intervening to stop the fall of the Norwegian krone, which is taking a beating from the economic fallout of the new coronavirus.

Norway central bank mulls stepping in to prop up falling krona
The headquarters of Norway's central bank in Oslo. Photo: Mahlum/Wikimedia Commons
Faced with the risk of recession and a sharp drop in the price of oil, of which Norway is Western Europe's largest producer, the Norwegian krone is buckling under.
Since the beginning of the year, when the currency was already weakened, the dollar has appreciated against the krone by more than 20 percent and the euro by almost 18 percent.
The drop intensified on Wednesday and according to business news site the currency had never weakened more in a day since the country abandoned its fixed exchange rate regime in 1992.
“In recent days, there has been an extraordinary situation in the market for Norwegian kroner,” Norges Bank, the country's central bank, said in a statement.
“Against this background Norges Bank is continuously considering whether there is a need to intervene in the market by purchasing Norwegian kroner,” it said.