STOCKHOLM (AP) — The Nobel Foundation said Friday that it will raise the award amount for this year’s Nobel Prizes by 1 million kronor ($90,000) to 11 million kronor ($986,270) as the Swedish currency has plummeted recently.
"The Foundation has chosen to increase the prize amount because it is financially viable to do so,” it said in a brief statement.
The rapid depreciation of the Swedish currency has pushed it to its lowest level ever against the euro and the U.S. dollar. Sweden has been struggling with high inflation — it was 7.5% in August, down from 9.3% in July, far from the 2% target set by the Riksbank, Sweden's central bank.
When the first Nobel Prizes were awarded in 1901, the prize amount was 150,782 kronor per category, the foundation said.
Over the past 15 years, the amount has been adjusted several times, it said. In 2012, it was reduced from 10 million kronor to 8 million kronor as a broad-based program to strengthen the Nobel Foundation’s finances was initiated. In 2017, the prize amount was increased from 8 million kronor to 9 million kronor. In 2020, it was raised to 10 million kronor.
This year’s Nobel Prize winners will be announced in early October. The laureates are then invited to receive their awards at prize ceremonies on Dec. 10, the anniversary of award founder Alfred Nobel’s death in 1896. The prestigious peace prize is handed out in Oslo, according to Nobel's wishes, while the other award ceremonies are held in Stockholm.
Sweden is not part of the eurozone. Twenty years ago, Swedes held a referendum on whether to join the European currency and voted against it.