Bank lending expands 18.3% in March

Published April 30, 2018, 12:00 AM

by manilabulletin_admin

By Lee C. Chipongian

Big banks’ outstanding loans – minus banks’ repos – amounted to P7.31 trillion in March, up by a robust 18.3 percent year-on-year, although the expansion was slower than the 19.5 percent registered in February, the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP) reported yesterday.

With reverse repurchase placements (RRPs), or repos, with the BSP, bank lending increased by 18.8 percent from 17.6 percent of the previous tally. Inclusive of RRPs, total loans reached P7.61 trillion in March. Computed with loans to domestic banks’ foreign offices, interbank loans, loans and receivables from RRPs and other items, the total outstanding loans stood at P7.98 trillion.

As for domestic liquidity, the BSP reported this at P10.9 trillion in March, up by 14.4 percent year-on-year. It was a higher growth number compared to February’s 13.5 percent.

The BSP said domestic claims were up by 14.2 percent due to sustained growth in bank lending. The net claims on the central government also increased by 6.5 percent from 3.7 percent from increased borrowings by the National Government.

In March, loans for production activities which is bulk of bank lending with an 88.4 percent share of the total – grew by 18.1 percent to P6.46 trillion.

Loans to real estate activities rose by 18.6 percent to P1.27 trillion while electricity, gas, steam and airconditioning supply went up by 23.7 percent to P842.83 billion.

Loans to wholesale and retail trade, repair of motor vehicles and motorcycles increased by 17.6 percent to P981.96 billion while manufacturing and financial and insurance activities went up by 11.1 percent and 17.1 percent respectively to P958.25 billion and P602.12 billion.

The growth of household consumption loans however slowed down to 19.3 percent in March from 19.9 percent previously. “The slower increase in motor vehicle loans and salary-based general purpose loans as well as the contraction in other types of household loans offset the faster expansion in credit card loans in March,” said the BSP.

In peso value, consumption loans amounted to P589.10 billion, of which P239.33 billion are credit card loans and P269.27 billion are motor vehicle loans. About P68.94 billion are salary-based general consumption loans.

“The BSP will continue to ensure that the expansion in domestic credit and liquidity proceeds in line with overall economic growth while remaining consistent with the BSP’s price and financial stability objectives,” the central bank said.

In the meantime, the BSP said it will continue to manage money supply to support bank lending growth.