Border trade booms again during Easter

Customs officers were prepared this past week for another seasonal burst of Norwegians driving over the border to shop in Sweden. Border trade is stronger than ever, but there are traps for unwary Norwegian shoppers. A new survey compiled by the Norwegian business school NHH (Norges Handelshøyskole) in Bergen shows that fully 60 percent of […]

Center Party wants to reverse sugar tax hike

Taxes on sugar and sugar products were boosted by 83 percent on January 1, and by 42.3 percent on soft drinks and other alcohol-free drinks. The idea was to reduce consumption of sugar, but now some politicians worry the higher taxes will simply encourage more Norwegians to do their shopping in neighbouring Sweden. “We can […]

Pigs suffering at Norwegian farms

Agricuture Minister Jon Georg Dale has called the pork industry and its representatives in on the proverbial carpet, after terrible conditions have been revealed at pig farms in southwestern Norway. Another case of poor animal welfare was reported just last week, the latest in a string of embarrassing incidents for farmers who survive on public […]

Housing market starts year with weak prices

Housing prices slid again during the first month of the new year, sliding 2.2 percent in January on a national average. Real estate brokers’ association Eiendom Norge called it the weakest January in 10 years. Sales and prices often pick up after the Christmas holidays, but not this year. Average prices were down, fully 9.4 […]

Meat and egg producer to cut staff, costs

Nortura, Norway’s dominant farmer-owned cooperative for meat, poultry and eggs, has launched a cost-cutting program that also will cut 300 jobs over the next three years. Nortura issued a warning this week that it expects weaker results for 2017. A looming restructuring program at Nortura, which has around 5,500 employees nationwide, “will affect so many […]

Housing prices still scare analysts

Housing prices were down another 1.1 percent in November and it hasn’t taken so long to sell a home since the finance crisis in 2008. International credit analysts and economists, however, still think Norwegian housing prices are too high and that a so-called “market correction” will hurt the economy. It now takes an average of […]

Housing prices keep sliding, debt rising

State financial authorities at Finanstilsynet report that housing prices are likely to keep falling through 2018 before they start rising again. Prices have fallen more than 10 percent in Oslo since April. “This is a natural chill in the market after the strong price growth we had last year,” said Morten Baltzersen, director of Finanstilsynet, […]

Lobbyists target new cut-rate hair-cutter

Lobbying forces led by Norway’s national employers’ organization NHO are promoting new regulations that could snarl the business plan of the cut-rate hair-cutting chain called Cutters. NHO usually supports innovative business ventures like Cutters, but the popular and fast-growing chain poses new competition for the full-service and much more expensive hair salon branch that NHO represents. The […]

New haircut chain challenges salons

In a country where a haircut can routinely cost as much as going to the dentist, Norwegians are flocking to a new chain that offers only quick haircuts for a fixed, relatively low price. The arrival of Cutters has left established salons tearing their own hair out over the new competition that they claim violates professional […]

Norwegian prices still shock visitors

It’s official: Prices in Norway are 40 percent higher on average than in other EU countries, meaning they’re even higher compared to prices in the Americas and Asia, where they’re generally lower than in the EU. A new survey confirms why visitors can still be shocked after visiting a Norwegian restaurant, grocery store and especially […]