Which career path did you envision for yourself when you were younger?
"From a very early age, I was interested in working with my hands. Building sheds and hide-outs in the forest or working with mechanics in the garage at home led me to imagine myself as a carpenter in Africa. When I was growing up, it was very normal to collect money and help and support different projects in Africa (Ethiopia, Eritrea, Tanzania) and India in various ways.
Later on, in the early 80s, computers seemed exciting and I had plans to become an engineer rather late into my time at high school. By then, my interest in economics had taken off and I decided to study economics at university."
Which part of your education have you used the most in your career?
"A solid foundation in several of the financial courses at university is probably what I’m still using on an almost daily basis. A fellow student at the School of Economics at Lund University suggested a rather new and nerdy theme for my master’s thesis: Stochastic models for credit spread pricing in continuous time. I have him to thank for introducing me to an area of finance and capital markets that I still enjoy very much. The fellow student, Jannis Asdres, was portfolio manager for AP3 for many years (Swedish state buffer fund, ed).
I also served as an officer in the Swedish Air Force Reserves for over 20 years and in that role, I’ve been trained in making decisions on the back of information and analysis but also to make decisions when this is lacking."
Which part of your resumé represents the biggest change in your career?
"In 2005, after 8 years of analyzing credit risk and companies as a “sell-side analyst” at Nordea Markets, I was offered a job as a portfolio manager.
That was not an easy decision for me, but I have never regretted that move. The portfolio manager job is still a very analytical role, which I really appreciate, and the quick step from conclusion to execution is something I really like. The “stake in the game” nature of being responsible for the portfolios’ performances and your investors and clients’ assets is also something that I find extremely motivating."
Which leader in the business has inspired your career the most?
"I’ve been fortunate to have several very good leaders throughout my career. I would not say they have “inspired my career”, however. They’ve more been people that I’ve learnt from and respected for their skills and leadership styles. I’ve always been entrusted with responsibility and respect and that is something I try to pass on and live by in my role as team leader.
The financial industry in general and the capital markets in particular have gone through a huge transformation over the years. Leadership under such circumstances is not easy, but interesting both to execute and to observe."
What occupies you the most right now?
"The continuous work to move our team and the rest of the fixed income community in a more sustainable direction is something I truly believe in. In my opinion, we have both a fiduciary and moral responsibility to address the many challenges we face as a society.
We have managed sustainable strategies for many years in my team and the dialogue on this matter with clients, colleagues, companies and counterparties in the market is time consuming but also very rewarding! Times are changing and with change follows risks and uncertainties – but also fantastic opportunities.
At the end of January, I was entrusted with responsibility for Fixed Income overall in addition to Credits in Danske Bank Asset Management. This is a very exciting opportunity and obviously something that gets my attention at the moment!"