BoA: 2019 has started more positive, Credit grows during February
The credit grew for the second consecutive month in February, confirming the positive start of 2019.
According to the Bank of Albania, the credit reached ALL 541.5 billion, up by nearly ALL five billion. On an annual basis, lending to the economy remains down, by 1.5% compared to the previous year. However, evidently, the decline has narrowed considerably, while excluding the effect of depreciated loans and the exchange rate, the loan portfolio for the economy would increase by about 6%.
Credit intensification in the first months of the year has come especially thanks to the business segment. Loans to private companies grew by about ALL seven billion in two months. Because the business absorbs the largest lending volumes, this segment remains the determinant for re-lending to the Albanian economy.
Business loans account for nearly 60% of total private sector credit however, the market has suffered as a decline in demand due to the crisis effects in the markets and a tighter supply from banks. The lower offer relates to increased care, as well as to some structural developments within the banking sector. Many banks have been focused on the stock-buying process, which has removed the focus from growth.
In the segment of individuals, lending has a positive lasting trend in time. The portfolio grew even during February, meanwhile it increased by 4.4% compared to the previous year. Low interest rates have stimulated lending both in mortgages and consumer loans.