NBP report: In the fourth quarter of last year, banks continued to limit the availability of loans to households and small and medium-sized enterprises. They predicted that in the first quarter of this year there would be a strong decline in demand for housing loans.
Quarterly information from the cycle
The National Bank of Poland published on February 4 this year. quarterly information from the cycle “Situation on the credit market – survey results to chairmen of credit committees”. This information discusses changes in banks ‘lending policy and demand for loans in the fourth quarter of 2012, and the banks’ forecasts for the first quarter of this year. The survey was conducted at the turn of 2012 and 2013 among 29 banks, whose total share in the loan portfolio was 81 percent.
The analysis shows that in the last months of last year (as it was also in the third quarter of 2012) the tightening of lending policy was continued.
This concerned both the criteria for granting loans
(These are requirements for creditworthiness) and conditions (including loan costs, amount of collateral). The lending policy tightened particularly in the case of the SME sector and loans to households.
According to banks’ announcements, this trend will continue in Q1 2013 – an exception may be a slight easing of the policy in the consumer loans segment.
The changes in lending policy result primarily from unfavorable forecasts
The loan becomes less available while there is no significant change or decrease in demand from bank customers. In the banks’ opinion, the changes in lending policy result primarily from unfavorable forecasts of the economic situation and increased risk of individual industries.
In the first quarter of 2013, banks additionally expect a significant drop in demand for housing loans in connection with the termination of the “Good Finance” program.