The Swedish people are very life-insurance conscious. In 1985, there were at least 560 Swedish insurance companies. Most companies are very small, however, and only 65 firms operated on a nationwide scale in 1995. The five largest companies held almost 80% of total insurance assets. Automobile liability insurance is compulsory in Sweden, as are nuclear liability and workers' compensation.
Since the deregulation of financial markets in the late 1980s, new credit institutions have appeared which target niche sectors in banking and other financial services. Insurance companies, such as Skandia, have created their own banks. The National Insurance Pension Fund and private insurance funds are among the largest single domestic investors on the Stockholm Stock Exchange. The insurance regulatory authority is the Financial Supervisory Authority which is an independent state agency.