Freeman Cebu Business

BSP: Consumer loans reach P997B as of end-Sept 2015

Carlo S. Lorenciana - The Freeman

CEBU, Philippines - Consumer loans extended by universal, commercial and thrift banks reached P997.2 billion as of end September 2015, the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas reported yesterday.

That is four percent higher than the P959.2 billion in consumer loans as of end June 2015.

"This sustains the quarter-on-quarter growth in said loans that started in 2008," the BSP said in a statement.

The central bank said the increase was driven by the rise in car and residential real estate loans.

Data from BSP showed that non-performing consumer loans of universal, commercial and thrift banks represented 4.6 percent of their total consumer loans as of end September last year, a slight rise from 4.5 percent posted a quarter earlier.

Non-performing loans are those that are in default or close to being in default.

According to the central bank, the 16.9 percent consumer credit exposure of Philippine banks remained the lowest among the 5 economies in Southeast Asia. As of end September 2015, consumer loan exposure in Malaysia stood at 54.2 percent; Thailand, 28.7 percent; Indonesia, 28 percent; and Singapore, 25.8 percent.

Previously, Cebu Bankers Club President Maximo Eleccion said the working millennials are seen to continue driving consumer loan growth in the country.

The BSP monitors the level and quality of consumer and other bank loans to ensure banks’ adherence to high credit standards.

Eleccion described this generation as bullish and ambitious, which would drive them to borrow banks to buy cards, get cash or fulfill their dream house. "We see consumer lending to continue to increase," the bank official had said. — (FREEMAN)

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