Payments in Sweden 2020

International payments need to be improved

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Payments between accounts work less well into many currencies

Published: 29 October 2020

Account-to-account payments between countries are common for purchases of larger objects such as cars, boats and real estate. They are also common in payments of taxes and fees, when making gifts and so on, when the payer initiates a payment to be deposited in the recipient’s bank account abroad. How much this costs and how long such a payment takes varies greatly depending on the country the money is to be sent to. Sending money to bank accounts in the euro area, Denmark, Norway and other EEA countries is significantly faster and cheaper than making payments to other countries.

Account-to-account payments from Swedish kronor to euros are just as fast and incur the same fees as making payments within Sweden. The only difference is that an exchange rate markup is added. This type of payment functions so well because the major Swedish banks are active in the euro area and can therefore initiate payments themselves in the euro countries’ payment systems without using expensive intermediaries. It is also due to there being joint regulations in the EU that regulate prices and the time that a payment is allowed to take (EU 2015/2366 and EU 924/2009).