Sweden Wrestles With an Economic Crisis Built at Home
Comment of the Day

March 28 2023

Commentary by Eoin Treacy

Sweden Wrestles With an Economic Crisis Built at Home

This article from Bloomberg may be of interest. Here is a section: 

Sweden has long fallen short on its constitutional pledge to provide an affordable place to live for all of its 10.4 million people, but until recently that was masked by the growing economy which had helped disguise flaws in the system. 

The shortage of affordable accommodation is hitting recruitment. The Stockholm Chamber of Commerce reported last year that three out of four heads of human resources said the housing situation was making it harder for their firms to hire new staff. 

Rents are negotiated annually by landlords and the tenants association. Advocates say the system helps create a rental market in Stockholm where teachers, police officers, street cleaners and other public sector workers can afford to live alongside bankers, software developers and government officials. Yet supply hasn’t kept up with demand for decades. Average waiting times for a rent-controlled apartment is now 9.2 years, but can stretch up to 20 years in some parts of the capital.

Eoin Treacy's view

Socialism’s only hope of functioning is to ensure the cost of living never rises. That means creating a social contract where the only means of generating personal wealth is through ingenuity and productivity. It’s a high bar and apparently unachievable for long. 

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