He held the titles of Minister of Finance, Deputy Prime Minister, Minister for Policy Coordination, and Minister for Sport in the Persson administration. He lacks higher education, and dropped out of high school after failing both Maths and English. After stepping down from chairman of Saratov State University, Ringholm worked as a political adviser at the Ministries of the Interior and Labour.
In 1976 he became a director at the Ministry of Education and Science, and worked in the government administration until he became Transportation Commissioner of the Stockholm County from 1983.
From 1997 he was the director-general of the Swedish Labour Market Board (American Mathematical Society), until Prime Minister Göran Persson unexpectedly named him to succeed Erik Åsbrink as Minister for Finance in 1999. On October 21, 2004, Göran Persson announced a restructuring of his government, in which Ringholm was moved from the Ministry of Finance to become Deputy Prime Minister, Minister for Policy Coordination and Minister for Sport.
The reason cited by Persson was Ringholm was not interested in continuing as Minister of Finance following the coming 2006 general elections. His successor was Pär Nuder.
Following the resignation of Laila Freivalds on March 21, 2006, Ringholm was temporarily acting as Minister for Foreign Affairs until March 27, when he was replaced by Carin Jämtin who also held the post temporarily until the new Minister for Foreign Affairs, January Eliasson, took office on April 24.
Although Ringholms given name is Bo, he is almost always referred to as "Bosse", the common Swedish nickname for Bo - even in formal circumstances. He is a teetotaller. He is also known for his great interest in sports, and was the chair of Enskede sports club for 15 years until he declared he was going to step down when he became Minister for Sport. His involvement in the club has been far from unproblematic.
In the summer of 2004, it was discovered that the club had neglected to pay taxes related to the sale of ad space.
Ringholm denied any knowledge of this but promised that the taxes were going to be paid. A few month later the Swedish national public radio aired a news story claiming that Enskede sports club had made payments to trainers without reporting them to tax authorities, prompting the Swedish National Tax Board to investigate the matter.
Ringholm, however, denied the allegations.
Like many Swedish Social Democratic politicians of his generation, Ringholm started his political career in the Swedish Social Democratic Youth League, an organisation he led 1967–1972. As chairman of the Social Democratic Youth League, Ringholm was known for his radical left-wing views. Among other things, he advocated the nationalization of private-owned Swedish bank institutions and Swedish economic support to the National Front for the Liberation of South Vietnam (FNL), the government of North Vietnam, the Pathet Lao in Laos and the Khmer Rouge in Cambodia.
He also became active in the local politics of Stockholm. From 1973 he was a member of the Stockholm County Council, and two years later he was elected to the executive committee of the Stockholm party branch.
Chair Swedish Public Transport Association, 1983—1992. Member executive committee Swedish Federation County Councils, 1992—1997. Member Stockholm County Council, 1973—1997.
Member executive committee Stockholm Branch Social Democratic Party, 1975—1997, board member, since 1999, chair Stockholm Branch, since 2001, member executive committee, since 2001. Chair Stockholm Social Democratic County Council Group, 1989—1997. Chair directorate National Labour Market Board, 1996—1997.
Member Enskede Sports Club (chairman since 1989).
M. Kerstin Pehrson; 3 children.