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People in Denmark are the most financially confident in the Nordic countries

Financial confidence is higher in Denmark than in the other Nordic countries, and despite uncertainty about developments in the global economy, overall confidence is up on last year.

Brexit, the ongoing trade conflict between the US and China, and turbulence on the stock markets.

In spite of increased uncertainty about the direction of the global economy, the overall level of financial confidence held by people living in Denmark has risen from 2018 to 2019. This is the conclusion of a report on financial confidence published in Danish by Danske Bank. The report is based on surveys conducted in the individual Nordic countries by research institute YouGov.

The rise comes on the heels of a period where the Danish economy has seen a favourable development in housing prices, increased employment and general economic growth. However, this period has also been marked by increased international unease and growing uncertainty.

Financial confidence is rising, but optimism is lower

An increase in real wages, falling interest rates, progress in the labour market, and rising housing prices all serve to create a solid foundation for the Danish economy. And this in turn contributes to a general experience of financial confidence among people living in Denmark. At the same time, however, there’s a shift in how those of us who live in Denmark view the future – we are certainly less optimistic than we used to be.

Louise Aggerstrøm Hansen

Senior Analyst, Danske Bank

Louise Aggerstrøm Hansen explains that this apparent paradox of rising financial confidence and lower optimism could possibly be due to the fact that although many people living in Denmark believe that the prosperity will continue they are less inclined than before to expect that the financial climate will become even better than it already is.

Financial confidence slightly up in Sweden, unchanged in Norway, and decreasing in Finland
Because financial confidence fluctuates little from year to year, the differences between the Nordic countries is the most interesting aspect.

On a scale of one to ten, where ten expresses maximum confidence, financial confidence in Denmark has risen from 6.6 in 2018 to 6.8 this year.

Besides Denmark, the only other Nordic country to see an increase in financial confidence is Sweden, which saw an increase from 6.5 in 2018 to 6.6 this year. This puts Sweden at the same level as Norway, where financial confidence remains unchanged. Once again, financial confidence in Finland is the lowest, where it dropped from 6.1 in 2018 to 6.0 this year.

Last year, people in Denmark were the most optimistic in the Nordic countries; this year, when considering the economic development for the coming five years, the study shows that Norwegians are the most optimistic. In Norway, 50% of people expect their finances to improve, whereas only 17% expect them to worsen. In comparison, 25% of people in Sweden expect that the economy will deteriorate.