Volume I: Exchange Rates, Prices, and Wages, 1277-2008

23 April 2010 saw the publication of a new book of statistics concerning the growth of the Swedish monetary system, Historical Monetary and Financial Statistics for Sweden: Exchange rates, Prices and Wages, 1277–2008.

The book is the first of two volumes and focuses on exchange rates, consumer prices and wages. In this first volume, researchers from Gothenburg, Lund and Stockholm discuss earnings from the Middle Ages until the present century. A consumer price index will be presented which stretches back to 1290, among other features. The index shows that the century which experienced the highest inflation was the 1500s, followed by the 1900s. Considered in a longer historical perspective, the international performance of the Swedish currency has been weak. Throughout history, commitments to a stable currency have repeatedly been made, but major events such as wars and severe economic crises have often, although far from always, led to the breaking of these promises. As regards wage trends, the historical series indicate that real wages for a worker were higher during the Middle Ages than in the mid-1800s. Since the 1800s, wage differences between men and women have decreased. However, these differences have remained stable since the end of the 1970s.


The book, to be published by the Riksbank together with Ekelid Publishing House (Ekelids Förlag AB), forms part of a more comprehensive project that has previously resulted in a database of historical monetary statistics which can be found on the Riksbank's website.


The book is only available in English.


Contents and list of tables [Link]


  1. Introduction to Historical Monetary and Financial Statistics for Sweden: Exchange rates, prices, and wages, 1277–2008 [Chapter]
    Rodney Edvinsson, Tor Jacobson and Daniel Waldenström

  2. Swedish monetary standards in a historical perspective [Chapter]
    Rodney Edvinsson

  3. Swedish Payment Systems 995–1534 [Chapter] [Data]
    Rodney Edvinsson, Bo Franzén and Johan Söderberg

  4. The multiple currencies of Sweden-Finland 1534–1803 [Chapter] [Data]
    Rodney Edvinsson

  5. Foreign exchange rates in Sweden 1658–1803 [Chapter] [Data]
    Rodney Edvinsson

  6. Foreign exchange rates 1804–1914 [Chapter] [Data]
    Håkan Lobell

  7. From appreciation to depreciation – the exchange rate of the Swedish krona, 1913–2008 [Chapter] [Data]
    Jan Bohlin

  8. The evolution of Swedish consumer prices 1290–2008 [Chapter] [Data]
    Rodney Edvinsson and Johan Söderberg

  9. Long-term trends in real wages of labourers [Chapter] [Data]
    Johan Söderberg

  10. Nominal and real wages of manufacturing workers, 1860–2007 [Chapter] [Data]
    Svante Prado

Presentation of the authors [Link]

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