Fall in bank lending - less in March

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Fall in bank lending - less in March

News Article Date: Thursday 07th of May 2009

MADRID, May 4 (Reuters) - The reduction in mortgage lending by Spanish banks eased substantially in March from sharp falls seen in January and February, the Bank of Spain said on Monday. New mortgage loans granted by the banks fell 18.5 percent in March from a year ago, compared to a 49 percent drop in January and a 42 percent fall in February. The 7 billion euros lent was the largest amount since July 2008, according to provisional data cited by the central bank. Bank of Spain figures also showed banks may slowly be turning the consumer credit tap back on. Banks lent consumers 24.4 percent less than a year ago in March, compared to a 41.6 percent decline in February. The bank's figures do not take into account the calendar effect that March had two extra working days this year compared to a year ago.

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