Skip to comments.Why is Scandinavia so expensive?
Posted on 11/11/2011 6:09:39 PM PST by WesternCulture
Why are cities like Oslo, Copenhagen and Stockholm so expensive?
- Why are you so poor?
To a 20 year old office secretary who works there, Stockholm is not expensive.
She can easily afford a 79 SEK sushi lunch and then do some shopping before it's back to work again.
She owns a chic French car and a 200 000 apartment and her dad probably owns two homes and a nice leisure boat as well as a summer house in the magnificent archipelago of that Nordic city.
There is nothing wrong with Scandinavian price levels.
The may ‘have’ all these things, but it isn’t because they are wealthy nor are things cheap. Sweden is leading the EU in individual debt at an alarming rate. Currently individual debt is 70% of Sweden’s GDP- double the level since 1970.
Nice troll thread.
I’m not going there, so it is of no interest to me. Not going to NYC or Tokyo, either. I’m happy where I am. (And I’ve been a lot of places).
Isn’t there oil in the North Sea or something? I thought there was some kind of fossil fuel source that allowed them to get away with their welfare system, ala the gulf states. In other words, cheaters!
Thanks for sharing your anecdotes with us.
I was in Helsinki in August. Gasoline there was selling for $8.77 per gallon (E1.589 per liter). A 0.5 liter (16.9 oz.) portion of beer in a brewpub sold for about $10.50 (E7.50).
Meanwhile, 50 miles to the south, in perhaps the most liberty loving country in Europe, Estonia, pubs sold beer for less than $2.00 and gasoline was just above $6.50 per gallon, the cheapest in Europe.
Looking at “member since dates” you are the troll. Sorry, numbers don’t lie.
Hey WC, how’s Sweden today ?
The more small businesses a nation has the better.
Every small business has an owner in an excellent financial position relative to the average employee of a large company. They have flexibility as to their time and money. This is only really understood when one quits one’s job.
Something as simple as a single ice cream shop can be a very lucrative business.
Once the number of people in a town who are financially comfortable becomes a significant amount of the population of the town, the town itself becomes an “affluent” town. In an affluent town, even the poorest citizens of the town are much better off than the poor in a poor town. In fact, poverty just goes away.
Many people that come to America from other nations with very little money are smart enough to go right to the affluent areas, where if they work hard and save they can amass a surprisely large amount of money.
Sweden has very little underclass outside of Malmo. It's most nordic peoples who endeavor to create and work...it's a product of their culture and abilities.
While they have very generous welfare benefits, they have a fairly light load.
There will be those who say their debt is too high at the individual level and at government level...but they can afford it.
But all other things aside; after over thirty years of buying and selling internationally; NO one ever failed worse or pi**$d me off worse than the Swedes.
Like any european he may be irritating at times:) but I usually find his posts either entertaining or informative. He is no troll.
Right there IS a long lunch, dinner AND breakfast.
I don't believe that, unless she's spending her evenings as a high-end hooker.
How about if you give some specifics as to what the after-tax income is for that 20 year old office secretary.
you forgot the best part, dessert
So many answers, so little sense.
In terms of standards of living, America was surpassed by Sweden something like 10 years ago.
But fact is that most European nations have not. USA is still richer than most European nations.
But Europe is rapidly catching up in the department of car standards.
Anyone crusing down a European highway like that one stretching between the Ruhr District and Belgium would probably get shocked by what cars Europeans of today drive. Nothing but 50 000 Mercedes, BMW, Volvo and Audi cars. Full four lanes..
This is not parallelled by anything in America.
>> There is nothing wrong with Scandinavian price levels <<
I must respectfully disagree. Here’s a typical, example:
Go to an apothecary in Oslo or Stavanger or Tromsø to buy a tube of toothpaste. It will set you back ca. USD 10.00 (50 NoK). And the quality is terrible.
So what happens? Among other things, Norwegian tourists in the USA stock up on toothpaste for the journey back home. Really!
What explains this absurd situation? At least three underlying factors:
1. Norway’s effective tax level, based mainly on its VAT plus its income tax, is among the world’s highest.
2. Norway isn’t a member of the EU and therefore can protect domestic producers by a variety of tariffs and import restrictions. Colgate, Crest and Sensodyne need not apply for entry.
3. Norway has gigantic revenues from petroleum and natural gas, which — on top of its tax revenues — enable an extremely generous and probably unparalled agenda of “social” spending.
These factors combine in a fashion that leaves the Norwegian populace mostly satisfied. They get so many freebies from the government — education, medical care, pensions, etc. — that they have enough disposable income left over to spend USD 5.00 for a newspaper, USD 10.00 for toothpaste, USD 15.00 for a beer, and USD 50.00 for a pizza, all without many complaints. In other words, the political will to change matters doesn’t exist.
Now if Norway didn’t have those huge revenues from fossil fuels, the country might be forced like Sweden to move gradually in the direction of freer markets and less socialism. But such a change doesn’t seem even remotely probable in the foreseeable future.
Their "thermometers" are not registering any cold.
"What about second breakfast?" queried the hobbit.
Or truly the best part, "filling up the corners." And yes, I quote Tolkien.
“I don’t believe that”
- There are certain parts of Sweden that are not so rich, but have a look for yourself (link below).
Poverty is not even allowed on our soil.
If you chose to live like a gypsy, broad-shouldered men from the local government will come over to your house and force-feed you real food and make you drive a Volvo.
Very few people have to undergo this treatment, simply because most citizens in Sweden like to live in clean, well governed cities like these:
I call BS. There’s no such thing as a “chic French car”.
When I dig into the info I can find on tax rates and earnings per capita, I don't see the money being there for somebody just out of school to "owns a chic French car and a 200 000 apartment".
“You didn’t say anything about what the aftertax income of that 20 year old office secretary is.”
- You’ve heard horror stories about Swedish taxes. In fact, Swedish tax levels of today aren’t really that bad.
I worked for Volvo Cars recently. Earned over $7000 a month and paid very little in tax (around 15% or so).
Belive it or not, Sweden is not a f*cked up corner of this world.
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