The banking system

Banks are central participants in the financial system as payments in the economy are primarily made via bank accounts.

Sweden has a large banking system that is concentrated around a few tightly interwoven major banks. Consequently, in the event of a financial crisis, problems in one of these banks risk rapidly spreading to the entire banking system, which could involve a threat to the stability of the Swedish financial system.

The Riksbank oversees the banking system

The Riksbank oversees and analyses the Swedish financial system from the perspective of risk and vulnerability, with a focus on the systemically-important major Swedish banks Nordea, Handelsbanken, SEB and Swedbank. The Riksbank makes assessments of the banks' resilience to financial stress and other unexpected negative events, primarily from the perspective of liquidity risk and credit risk.

One of the Riksbank's most important tasks is to supply liquidity to the banking system when necessary. This can happen either under normal economic circumstances or in a crisis situation. In a stress situation, the Riksbank can provide liquidity to the economy as a whole, but it can also issue emergency liquidity assistance to individual participants.

The Riksbank also takes part in the design of international banking regulations and in other banking-related forums on both the national and international levels.

Updated 01/02/2018