Martin Flodén: Should the Riksbank's payment system be open 24/365?

Speech by Mr Martin Flodén, Deputy Governor of the Sveriges Riksbank, at the Riksbank, Stockholm, 12 June 2019.

Central bank speech  | 
13 June 2019
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Accompanying slides of the speech.

The central bank's role in the Swedish payment infrastructure has increasingly come into focus at the Riksbank.1 I am aware that this is an area that may not per-haps interest the general public as much as negative interest rates, housing prices, cash-free shops, the krona exchange rate and other things normally associated with the Riksbank. Most people are not - to be honest - very interested in how the "plumbing" works that enables millions of payments to be made every day, to a total value of hundreds of billions of krona. This is not really surprising. Pay-ments are not an objective in themselves, but a means of making our day-to-day life work; getting our wages, paying our bills, buying food, giving the children pocket money, saving for our retirement and so on. But, like other central banks, the Riksbank has been given the task of promoting a safe and efficient payment system. We at the Riksbank therefore need to understand how the payment sys-tem is put together and to consider what measures and investments are needed to ensure it remains safe and efficient.

The Swedish payment market has changed rapidly over the past decade.