Denmark has followed the lead set by Sweden in the Nordic region and passed a law establishing a new type of savings account, which investors can use to invest in equities directly or via collective investments and which offers tax advantages.
The Danish aktiesparekonto is modelled on the existing Investeringssparkonto regime that has been in place in Sweden since January 2012, and which has also been replicated in Norway (see: http://www.investmenteurope.net/regions/swedendenmarkfinlandnorway/norway-to-extend-deadline-for-tax-efficient-savings-vehicle/ )
The Danish model similarly is intended to encourage investments into equities, by offering tax efficiency, which means a lower tax rate applied to returns on assets held within the account. However, the Danish regime is different in that it will stagger the maximum investment amounts allowed per individual per year, in the first few years of the regime.
In the first year, starting 1 January 2019, the ‘ceiling’ has been set at DKK50,000, rising to DKK100, then DKK150,000, then DKK200,000 (€6,700, €13,400, €20.100 and €26.800 respectively) in subsequent years.
A tax rate of 17% will be applied to gains from assets held in an aktiesparekonto.
The law establishing the regime was passed on its third reading on 29 November 2018.
Trade association Finans Danmark, welcomed the passing of the vote, and said that the aktiesparekonto had long stood on its agenda as a good way to strengthen the equity culture in Denmark.
Birgitte Søgaard Holm, director of Investments & Savings at Finans Danmark, said: “Danish workers have more than DKK800m in their deposit accounts at effectively 0% in interest. With the introduction of the aktiesparekonto it is expected that much of these assets may be withdrawn and put to work, to the benefit of Danish families, where it can obtain a better return, also to the benefit of businesses. It has been a great success in Sweden, and now we will also enjoy this in Denmark.”