Bank of England reveals high street banks cut back lending

07:53, February 20, 2010      

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The Bank of England (BOE), Britain' s central bank, said on Friday in its monthly Trends in Lending report that there was an 8.1-percent fall in the stock of loans to businesses in last December comparing with the same month in 2008.

The BOE report said that for the month of December lending was down by 4.3 billion pounds (about 6.7 billion U.S. dollars).

The report covers the major UK lenders -- Banco Santander, Barclays, HSBC, Lloyds Banking Group, Nationwide and Royal Bank of Scotland. Together they accounted for around 65 percent of the stock of lending to businesses, 45 percent of the stock of consumer credit, and 75 percent of the stock of mortgage lending at the end of 2009.

Net lending to UK businesses weakened in December, said the report. In 2009 Q4 the stock of lending to companies fell across all the main sectors of the economy for the third consecutive quarter, though the stock of lending to commercial real estate companies was broadly unchanged on a year earlier.

The flow of net mortgage lending slowed in December, though the three-month annualized rate of lending growth remained unchanged.

The total flow of net consumer credit was slightly positive in December, though the 12-month growth rate of the stock of lending remained negative and at a low since the beginning of records, with lending on credit cards and personal loans falling by 0.5 percent.

Source: Xinhua
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