Finance minister: Sweden to stick to "fiscal responsibility"

Finance minister: Sweden to stick to "fiscal responsibility" Stockholm - The Swedish government remains committed to "fiscal responsibility" and is prepared to tackle rising unemployment, Finance Minister Anders Borg said Wednesday.

Presenting his spring budget to parliament, Borg underlined that an additional 10 billion kronor (1.2 billion dollars) was to be allocated for labour market programmes to help youth and people who have just become unemployed to find employment.

Investment group Investor AB reports first quarter loss

Swedish blue-chip companies Investor-ABStockholm - The Swedish investment company Investor AB, which has key stakes in leading Swedish blue-chip companies Wednesday reported a loss for first quarter of 2009 and predicted that the "general economy will be in disarray" for most of the year. The group reported a first quarter loss of 3.02 billion kronor (369 billion dollars), compared to a loss of 8.9 billion kronor for the corresponding business period 2008.

At the end of March the net asset value had declined 2 per cent to 109 billion kronor, compared to 115 billion kronor at the end of 2008.

GM subsidiary Saab concludes job cut talks, 701 employees to go

GM subsidiary Saab concludes job cut talks, 701 employees to go Stockholm - Swedish car maker Saab on Tuesday said it was to trim 701 jobs after concluding talks with unions. Saab Automobile, owned by US giant General Motors Corp, a month ago said it planned to shed 750 employees from its workforce of about 4,000 in Sweden in thewake of the crisis in the car market brought on by tumbling sales.

The agreed cuts were to affect 646 blue collar workers and 55 white collar employees based at its plant in Trollhattan in the south-west of the country, broadcaster TV4 Vast reported.

Swedish district court rules against "affirmative action"

Swedish district court rules against "affirmative action"Stockholm  - A Swedish district court has criticized the Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences for discriminating against women in its selection process for applicants to veterinary studies.

The district court in the university city of Uppsala, north-west of Stockholm, ruled that 44 women were discriminated against by being denied places in veterinary school even though they had the same grades as the male applicants.

Sweden extends bank loan guarantee package

Sweden extends bank loan guarantee packageStockholm  - The Swedish government Thursday prolonged its guarantee programme for bank lending, in an attempt to free up more credit.

"Even if the financial markets are functioning better, the global financial crisis and its ramifications for jobs and companies in Sweden is far from over," Financial Markets Minister Mats Odell told reporters.

Under the programme, the government is prepared to lend money to banks that are having difficulty getting credit from private sources. The banks, in turn, lend this money on to others.

Swedish internet traffic drops with new file sharing law

Swedish internet traffic drops with new file sharing law Stockholm - Swedish internet traffic dropped by a third on Wednesday, the first day a new file sharing law went into effect, reports said Thursday.

The new law, based on the European Union's Intellectual Property Rights Enforcement Directive (IPRED), allows courts to order internet operators to hand over details that identify suspected illegal file sharers.

The 30-per-cent drop was reported by Netnod, which operates internet exchanges in five Swedish cities.