articles | 15 January 2015

Cyprus bank lending conditions tighten

Banks tightened loan conditions in the third quarter of 2014 according to the latest Bank Lending Survey by the Central Bank of Cyprus.

The bank ‘diffusion’ index for loans to businesses dropped to 13% from close to 40% in the previous quarter.

Banks surveyed were expecting criteria for business loans to remain unchanged in the fourth quarter.

Lending also became more difficult for households, both for mortgages and consumer loans.

As with loans to businesses, lending criteria to households for the fourth quarter of 2014 were expected to remain unchanged.

On the demand side, net demand for consumer and other loans dropped in the third quarter of 2014, while demand for other loan categories remained unchanged.

Tighter lending conditions come against a backdrop of rising non-performing loans (NPLs), which reached 48.9% in all banks and cooperatives in September 2014, from 42.1% in December 2013 according to Central Bank data released in December.

The Central Bank told parliamentary Committee on Institutions on Tuesday that restructured NPLs now reached €3.4 billion or 12.36% of the €27.6 billion total.

This related to 15,411 accounts and 13,609 borrowers. Of the €3.4 billion restructured, €1.9 billion related to business loans.

Source: InCyprus

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