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Savings banks and working-class saving during the Swedish industrialisation
Uppsala University, Disciplinary Domain of Humanities and Social Sciences, Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of Economic History.
Uppsala University, Disciplinary Domain of Humanities and Social Sciences, Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of Economic History.
2016 (English)In: Financial History Review, ISSN 0968-5650, E-ISSN 1474-0052, Vol. 23, no 1, 111-132 p.Article in journal, Editorial material (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

This article deals with savings banks and the extent to which they encouraged workers to save. A study of probate inventories from three Swedish towns shows that just 20-30 per cent of workers had assets in savings banks during the second half of the nineteenth century. Saving patterns differed greatly among groups of workers. Savings banks were most important for unskilled, unmarried women, but married workers were more likely to invest in, for example, real estate (1870s) and insurance (1900s). Family considerations greatly affected saving decisions, which detracted from the appeal of savings banks. Their emphasis on individual saving was more suitable for those who needed a flexible alternative to use for different saving needs. This flexibility also made it easier for savings banks to meet growing competition and can explain why they continued to attract workers in the twentieth century. Although savings banks never dominated the workers' saving arena, they probably promoted unmarried workers' awareness of the advantages of saving. Consequently, since all married workers had previously been unmarried, savings banks most likely contributed to fostering saving habits among the working class.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2016. Vol. 23, no 1, 111-132 p.
Keyword [en]
savings banks, workers, family structure, saving methods
National Category
Social Sciences
Research subject
Economic History
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:uu:diva-293522DOI: 10.1017/S0968565016000032ISI: 000381281000005OAI: oai:DiVA.org:uu-293522DiVA: diva2:927911
Funder
The Jan Wallander and Tom Hedelius Foundation, P2015 0150:1Åke Wiberg Foundation, H14-0103
Available from: 2016-05-13 Created: 2016-05-13 Last updated: 2016-10-06Bibliographically approved

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CiteExportLink to record
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Citation style
  • apa
  • ieee
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Language
  • de-DE
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  • en-US
  • fi-FI
  • nn-NO
  • nn-NB
  • sv-SE
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Output format
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