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People pass by the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas sign at the central bank's headquarters in Malate, Manila. (Photo: Alvin I. Dacanay)

Bank lending continues to grow in April – BSP

Preliminary data show that outstanding loans of universal and commercial banks, net of reverse repurchase (RRP) placements with central bank, grew at a slightly slower rate of 12.7 percent in April from 12.9 percent (revised) in March, the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP) disclosed in a statement over the weekend.

Meanwhile, the growth in bank lending inclusive of RRPs accelerated to 12.8 percent in April from 11.5 percent (revised) percent in the previous month. On a month-on-month seasonally-adjusted basis, commercial bank loans net of RRPs and inclusive of RRPs decreased by 1.1 percent and 0.4 percent, respectively.

Loans for production activities—which comprised 88.2 percent of banks’ aggregate loan portfolio, net of RRP—increased at a slower pace of 12.4 percent in April from 12.8 percent in the previous month.

The growth in production loans was driven primarily by lending to the following sectors: financial and insurance activities (28.8 percent); real estate activities (13.9 percent); wholesale and retail trade, repair of motor vehicles and motorcycles (11.9 percent); construction (48.9 percent); manufacturing (10.7 percent); and, electricity, gas, steam and air-conditioning supply (11.2 percent).

Bank lending to other sectors also increased during the month except those in other community, social and personal activities (-57.2 percent); professional, scientific and technical activities (-32.0 percent); human health and social work activities (-0.8 percent); and, activities of households as employers, undifferentiated goods and services (-0.3 percent).

Meanwhile, loans for household consumption grew by15.0 percent in April from 15.1 percent in March, as faster growth in credit card loans and motor vehicle loans was slightly offset by the slower expansion in salary-based general purpose consumption loans and other types of household loans during the month.

Going forward, the BSP will continue to ensure that the expansion in domestic credit and liquidity remains consistent with promoting non-inflationary and sustainable growth.

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