2003 - Lars Heikensten becomes Governor of the Riksbank

Lars Heikensten

Heikensten had eight years’ experience of the role of Deputy Governor before he became Governor of the Riksbank. During his tenure, he managed interest rate cuts and Sweden’s referendum on the EMU.

Lars Heikensten was born in 1950 in Bromma, a borough of Stockholm, and is both a Doctor of economics and a Swedish civil servant.

Before he was appointed Governor of the Riksbank in 2003, Heikensten had been Deputy Governor of the Riksbank with responsibility for monetary policy for eight years. During his years at the Riksbank, he witnessed major changes in Sweden’s economy. These included the Riksbank’s transformation into the world’s most open central bank, the establishment of inflation targeting and radical interest rate cuts. Over the two years that Heikensten was Governor, the repo rate continued to fall from 3.75 per cent to 1.5 per cent with the aim of stimulating inflation.

In 2003, there was a referendum in Sweden in which the majority of the Swedish people decided to vote no to the EMU (länk). With Heikensten at the rudder, the Riksbank continued to conduct monetary policy without any changes.

Heikensten stood down as Governor of the Riksbank in 2005.