Bank lending slows

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Up 20.1% in June vs up 21% in May

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Bank lending in the Philippines lost some momentum in June but still reflected the strong foundation of the domestic economy, data from the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP) showed on Thursday.

Outstanding loans granted by commercial banks, net of reverse repurchase (RRP) placements with the central bank, posted a 20.1-percent increase in the month, compared with a 21-percent rise in May, according to the BSP data.

Including the RRPs, bank lending rose at a slower pace of 18.4 percent, decelerating from a 19.5 percent rise recorded the preceding month. On a seasonally adjusted basis, commercial bank lending increased by 0.2 percent for loans net of RRPs month-on-month and by 0.1 percent for loans inclusive of RRPs.

“The sustained expansion in bank lending reflects the strong underpinnings of the domestic economy. Going forward, the BSP will continue to assess prevailing monetary conditions to ensure that liquidity and credit activities remain consistent with the BSP’s price and financial stability objectives,” the central bank said.

Comprising more than four-fifths of banks’ aggregate loan portfolio, loans for production activities expanded by 17.7 percent in June from 19 percent in May.

The central bank said the expansion in production loans was driven primarily by increased lending for real estate, renting, and business services; electricity, gas and water; wholesale and retail trade; manufacturing; and agriculture, hunting and forestry.

“Bank lending to other sectors also rose during the month, except for mining and quarrying and public administration and defense which declined by 14.7 percent and 2.6 percent, respectively,” the BSP said.

Loans for household consumption grew at a faster pace of 16.2 percent from 10.8 percent in the previous month, reflecting the expansion in auto loans and other types of loans such as salary loans and personal loans, it added.

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