Apartment buildings in Helsinki. LEHTIKUVA

A recent survey by Nordea Bank reveals that Finns hold realistic expectations about future interest rate developments and do not anticipate a return to zero interest rates. While the desire to buy homes remains stable, over a quarter of respondents are concerned about the current interest rate situation. Additionally, Nordea's housing market report predicts that the bottom of the housing price decline has been reached, but a full-scale recovery is still on the horizon.

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Mostphotos: Juha Tuomi

Preliminary data from January to August indicates that the number of fatal road traffic accidents in Finland has decreased this year. During this period, the investigating committees for traffic accidents have been called upon to examine a total of 116 fatal road traffic accidents, resulting in 123 fatalities. This represents 13 fewer accidents and 17 fewer fatalities compared to the same period last year, with the most significant reduction observed in passenger car accidents.

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Chairperson of the Industrial Union Riku Aalto attended a joint press conference of trade unions in Helsinki on Thursday, 21 September 2023. The Industrial Union will organise a number of hour-long walk-outs and work stoppages this week across Finland. (Antti Aimo-Koivisto – Lehtikuva)

TRADE UNIONS in Finland have detailed their first protests against the labour market reforms and social security cuts planned by the government, reports Helsingin Sanomat.

The Industrial Union, Trade Union Pro and Finnish Electrical Workers’ Union on Saturday revealed they will organise short work stoppages, walk-outs and protests this week at a number of workplaces in Satakunta and Southwest Finland.

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Nearly 40 per cent of Finns feel that digital services have a negative effect on concentration – Disconnect Day on 1 October invites people to put their devices away

The constant use of digital services is taking a toll on the concentration of nearly 40% of Finns, according to DNA's annual Digital Life survey. In response to this growing concern, DNA is organizing the second annual Disconnect Day on October 1st, 2023, urging people to put away their smart devices and rediscover the joy of uninterrupted moments.

The survey revealed that a significant portion of the population, particularly those under 35, is finding it challenging to detach from their smartphones and other digital devices.

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Buildings in Kalasatama, Helsinki. LEHTIKUVA

Helsinki is embracing change in its urban landscape, adapting to evolving trends such as increased remote work, shifting consumer behavior, and a growing demand for experiential urban spaces. To address these shifts, the city, under the initiative of Mayor Juhana Vartiainen, has launched efforts to update the principles guiding changes in building usage, particularly the conversion of commercial spaces into residential units.

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The heads of the four ruling parties in Finland, Riikka Purra of the Finns Party, Petteri Orpo of the National Coalition, Anna-Maja Henriksson of the Swedish People’s Party and Sari Essayah of the Christian Democrats, discussed the central government budget for next year at a news conference in Helsinki on 19 September 2023. (Markku Ulander – Lehtikuva)

THE GOVERNMENT of Prime Minister Petteri Orpo (NCP) appears to have sidestepped the principles of good lawmaking as it scrambles to put together the budgetary decisions associated with its social security cuts, reports YLE.

YLE on Sunday wrote that Chancellor of Justice Tuomas Pöysti has observed repeatedly in the autumn that the government has failed to sufficiently assess the impact of individual spending cuts and the cuts as a whole.

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Katja Syvärinen, a deputy board chairperson at the Central Organisation of Finnish Trade Unions (SAK), reacted at a joint news conference of trade unions in Helsinki on Thursday, 21 September 2023. Trade unions, she announced, will stage a series of protests in the coming couple of weeks in a bid to prompt the government to scrap its labour market reforms and social security cuts. (Antti Aimo-Koivisto – Lehtikuva)

THE CENTRAL ORGANISATION of Finnish Trade Unions (SAK) on Thursday announced it and its member unions will orchestrate a series of protests against the labour market and social security policies pursued by the government of Prime Minister Petteri Orpo (NCP).

Ranging from regional protests to walk-outs, the protests will take place three days a week for the next three weeks.

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Finnish Immigration Service service point in Helsinki. LEHTIKUVA

The Finnish Immigration Service is embarking on a transformative journey to enhance its procurement practices, with a particular focus on a competitive tendering process scheduled for 2024 concerning the development and maintenance of its case management and customer relationship management system for immigration affairs. Additionally, several segments of the agency's reception operations will undergo procurement changes.

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Kela service point in Kamppi. LEHTIKUVA

The Finnish government is gearing up to implement a series of substantial changes to the country's social security system in 2024, with far-reaching implications for benefit rates and eligibility criteria. These planned changes, detailed in the government program, will be introduced gradually throughout the year, rather than all at once at the beginning of 2024.

The Ministry of Social Affairs and Health will be tasked with finalizing and submitting the government's legislative proposals to Parliament for approval.

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Men in a meeting in Helsinki. LEHTIKUVA

According to the updated Glass Ceiling Index by the Finnish Business and Policy Forum (EVA), the proportion of women in leadership positions in Finland stood at 36.3 percent in 2022. While this figure is higher than the OECD average, it reveals stagnation in gender diversity within leadership roles in the country. In recent years, the percentage of women in leadership positions has even decreased.

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