In Norway, Everyone Can Know How Much You Earn

  • Published on: 14 April 2016
  • Wage transparency is a strange concept for most of us: not so in some of the Nordic countries. And while Norway, Sweden and Finland differ in exactly the amount of access they give the public, fundamentally your tax return would be public knowledge there. So how does it affect the world? And is it a good idea?

    Let's look at the science and find out.

    I'm at
    and on Twitter at
    on Facebook at
    and on Instagram as @tomscottgo


    Asthana, A., Weaver, M., & Mason, R. (2016). Osborne likely to publish tax returns as No 10 says all leaders should. The Guardian.

    Retrieved from

    Bø, E., Slemrod, J., & Thoresen, T. (2015). Taxes on the Internet: Deterrence Effects of Public Disclosure. American Economic Journal: Economic Policy, 7(1), 36-62.

    Brown, G., Gardner, J., Oswald, A., & Qian, J. (2008). Does Wage Rank Affect Employees’ Well-being?. Industrial Relations, 47(3), 355-389.

    Card, D., Mas, A., Moretti, E., & Saez, E. (2010). Inequality at Work: The Effect of Peer Salaries on Job Satisfaction.

    Mance, H., & Packard, J. (2016). Angry British MPs rebel over Norway-style tax reporting. Financial Times.

    Retrieved from

    Perez-Truglia, R. (2016). Measuring the Value of Self- and Social-Image: Evidence from a Natural Experiment. SSRN Electronic Journal.

    Zakrzewski, C. (2015). Ex-Google Employee Exposes Unequal Pay With Spreadsheet. Wall Street Journal.

    Retrieved from
  • Runtime : 3:13
  • tom scott tomscott things you might not know norway sweden finland tax returns tax wage transparency salary transparency skatt landsoversikt vg skatteetaten skatt øst oslo panama papers


  • This is A bad name
    This is A bad name   3 weeks ago

    When it comes to someone asking to see my yearly income I always refer to the age old phrase "You show me yours, then I'll show you mine."

  • Horny Fruit Flies
    Horny Fruit Flies   3 weeks ago

    Wage transparency is a good thing, it keeps the capitalist pigs in line and scared, which they should be.

  • Ortens Grabbar
    Ortens Grabbar   1 months ago

    In Sweden, you can google a name and it will provide their income, age, adress etc.

  • Alexander Moore
    Alexander Moore   1 months ago

    I feel like Norway, Sweden, Denmark and Finland are the modt evolved countries in the world.

  • TheGamerSK
    TheGamerSK   1 months ago

    Student here. I make exactly 60€ per month (doesn't seem like much but it's ok for my it's literally "free money") and it enabled me to buy a decent PC so im satisfiedEdit: Your turn

  • Gustav Røste
    Gustav Røste   1 months ago

    what's the problem? somebody knows how much you earn, so what?

  • Kristoffer Gundersen
    Kristoffer Gundersen   1 months ago

    I'm norwegian, and I've never used this service or heard of anyone else using this service to check on their neighbors :P Sure, some people check out what our politicians make, but who cares :)

  • Expensive LatTAE
    Expensive LatTAE   1 months ago

    To be honest I think it’s employers that don’t want what people earn public since it means if their employees realise the gap in their wages they’ll have to pay everyone equally (ofc lined up with experience, effort and time)

  • Matthew Reynolds
    Matthew Reynolds   1 months ago

    As with most European countries, I expect that there is a huge difference between the public information and reality. The more incentives you make to cheat on your taxes, the more likely it is people will cheat on their taxes.

  • Baldvinable
    Baldvinable   1 months ago

    Taxes are public in Iceland as well!

  • Rhyannon Ashford
    Rhyannon Ashford   1 months ago

    California does the same for public employees. It helps when you need to know what a job actually pays when you won't get a straight answer from employers.

  • i’m freia
    i’m freia   1 months ago

    So the average earnings of people isn’t a normal thing people know? I just searched up a certain thing and looked at the (around ish) amount certain jobs pay and then i can see the amount of tax they often have to pay

  • sToP!
    sToP!   1 months ago

    I can SEE my Home in most part of The video!!! ;)

  • Koselill
    Koselill   1 months ago

    People always treat this like as if Norwegian people scream and shout what they make from the rooftops! That's... not how it works. It's still an awkward subject that no one talks about. Usually it's journalists that lookup politicians and the rest of us are left alone. I never think about this at all. I barely even remember that it exists 95% of the time. Im sure people will look everyone up in the beginning, but after a year the hype dies down and no one will care. This is done for transparency and to know there aren't any corrupt people in power. There is literally no downside...

  • brenda poole
    brenda poole   1 months ago

    I don't care what others make although, I like that about the politicians.

  • Leon Ponce
    Leon Ponce   2 months ago

    In Brazil there's a transparency law that forces every branch of govt to publish their every expense, including public employee's salaries. Now wether or not they register every transaction is a different story. But at least there's a searchable website where you can find anyone's official salary. All you needs is a connection and maybe some Portuguese knowledge.

  • Mihaugoku
    Mihaugoku   2 months ago

    thing is, why should someone keep that secret?i make an astonishing 0, tbh..

  • nuclearping
    nuclearping   2 months ago

    Self-employed since 15 years in Germany. What are "tax-returns"? Never heared that term.

  • Nawnp MCPE
    Nawnp MCPE   2 months ago

    This is just another reason that these countries are seen as the least corrupt. They share the wages across the country as they are some of the highest wage countries.On the other hand many Americans think it is actually illegal to publish their wage(despite it not being).

  • Orppranator
    Orppranator   2 months ago

    In naive scandinavia, identity thieves get a field day... every day.

  • John Smith
    John Smith   2 months ago

    This is the obvious answer for wage discrimination.

  • Dan Ungureanu
    Dan Ungureanu   2 months ago

    Working full time just to be classified as "poor". So that should sum up my salary per year.

  • ChipZilla69
    ChipZilla69   2 months ago

    £68k inc bonus. 40 percent tax and 7k on trains.

  • Marcus Mercer
    Marcus Mercer   2 months ago

    Politicians don't like wage transparency because they are corrupted. Employers don't like it because people may find out the truth about capital distribution.

  • Sebastian kielek
    Sebastian kielek   2 months ago

    in Sweden i can just write their name on the internet and i find where they live

  • Luca Dario Bützberger
    Luca Dario Bützberger   2 months ago

    4800$ per month on paper. After deductions I actually get payed out 4200$ per month. After I payed taxes, healthcare, money to my parents and other mandatory monthly fees etc, I have about 2500$ left. I don't own a car, am young and live currently by my parents.

  • Mod 66
    Mod 66   2 months ago

    I earn 65 pounds an hour but I only work 8 hours a week.

  • Oskar
    Oskar   2 months ago

    Same in Sweden

  • Baresan
    Baresan   2 months ago

    This is a completely ridiculous concept and should be stopped immediately. No privacy and no freedom, absolute craziness.

  • 0 1
    0 1   2 months ago

    2:53 His head looks giant compared to his body

  • CliffJumpingProd
    CliffJumpingProd   2 months ago

    you cant buy a privat jumbo jet in actual gold if it's public that you've paid around 100 bucks in taxes.. huhm*trump*hurmh

  • Josh Johnson
    Josh Johnson   2 months ago

    I'm American, ask a stupid question, you'll get a stupid answer. Example:"How much money do you make?"Me: "Green."