The Markets Department (AFM) is responsible for the Riksbank's activities on the financial markets by working with the Riksbank's capital management, the operational implementation of monetary policy and exchange rate policy decisions, the reference rate SWESTR and ongoing market monitoring.
The department's tasks include managing the Riksbank's assets in the form of gold and foreign currency, the so-called gold and foreign exchange reserve. The department also manages the Riksbank's Swedish securities portfolio.
The Riksbank manages financial assets to ensure that it can fulfil its statutory objective and perform its tasks of implementing monetary policy, being prepared to intervene in the foreign exchange market and being able to provide temporary liquidity assistance to banks. Therefore the composition of the assets must ensure the tasks can always be performed. Given this, the assets must be managed to provide the highest possible long-term return in relation to the risk taken. A good long-term return on the assets also strengthens the Riksbank's financial independence. This management is carried out within the overall guidelines set by the Executive Board.
Responsibility for asset management includes the administration and settlement of the Riksbank's financial transactions as well as the evaluation of risks and results.
The department is also responsible for the implementation of monetary and foreign exchange policy decisions. This means conducting various types of transaction, such as issues of Riksbank Certificates and purchases of debt securities.
The Markets Department operationalises the Riksbank’s role as administrator of the transaction-based reference rate SWESTR, as well as average rates and an index based on SWESTR. This entails that the department, among its other tasks, determines and publishes these values daily. The department also conducts analyses and evaluations to ascertain the quality of SWESTR, and prepares the Executive Board’s decisions on matters relating to SWESTR.
In addition, the department manages the Riksbank's ongoing market monitoring.
Heidi Elmér has been Head of the department since 23 June 2014.
The department is divided into five divisions:
- Front Office
- Middle Office
- Banking Operations
- Investment Analysis
- Market Strategy