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Blackrock is about to find skeletons in Sweden's EUR 41 billion bond market

As Blackrock starts to kick the tires of Sweden’s credit market at the behest of the Riksbank, a world of trouble is about to reveal itself.

Photo: Lucas Jackson/Reuters/Ritzau Scanpix/Reuters / X90066

“This market seems completely dead,” said Hakan Karlsson, chief executive of MaxFastigheter i Sverige AB, a property firm with an unrated bond maturing in September. “If we want to retain the possibility of raising money through bonds, some kind of support is needed for it to function.”

BlackRock Financial Markets Advisory, a unit of the world’s biggest asset manager, was just hired to help Sweden’s Riksbank figure out how to buy into an asset class that recently suffered its worst rout since the financial crisis. Against the backdrop of a dispute with parliament over the legality of such purchases, the Riksbank has pledged to acquire parts of Sweden’s EUR 41 billion krona-denominated corporate bond market.

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