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Yay! Everyone in Norway Is a Millionaire Now

The good news: everyone in Norway became a theoretical millionaire in a milestone for the world's biggest sovereign wealth fund that has ballooned thanks to high oil and gas prices.

The bad news: they won't be able to spend their newfound wealth yet. The government has squirreled it away for future generations.

A preliminary counter on the website of Norway's central bank, which manages the fund, rose to 5.11 trillion crowns ($828.66 billion) Wednesday, fractionally more than a million times Norway's most recent official population estimate of 5,096,300.

It was the first time it reached the equivalent of a million crowns each, central bank spokesman Thomas Sevang said.

Set up in 1990, the fund owns around 1 percent of the world's stocks, as well as bonds and real estate from London to Boston, making the Nordic nation an exception when others are struggling under a mountain of debts.

Still, the oil wealth may also have made some Norwegians reluctant to work. "One in five people of working age receives some kind of social insurance instead of working," Doerum said, despite an official unemployment rate of 3.3 percent.

--Reuters