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Banks' bad loan ratios rise to 1% in first half

By Hu Xiaocen (Shanghai Daily)

15:06, July 16, 2013

BEIJING, July 16 (Xinhuanet) -- Bad loan ratios at Chinese banks edged up to around 1 percent in the first half of this year and there is no shortfall of money in the banking system, the National Bureau of Statistics said yesterday.

China's banking system doesn't lack liquidity given the financial indicators unveiled by the central bank for the first half, Sheng Laiyun, an NBS spokesman, said at a press conference in Beijing.

Additionally, the system has a relatively high quality of assets because the bad loan ratio was maintained at around 1 percent during the period, Sheng added.

Total social financing, the broadest measure of credit supply, amounted to 10.15 trillion yuan (US$1.64 trillion) in the first half, up over 20 percent from the same period in 2012, according to the People's Bank of China.

Despite a slight increase in the bad loan ratio from a year earlier, the level of bad loans was still kept low. Moreover the provision coverage ratio, a measure of money set aside by lenders for potential bad debt losses, was as high as 280 percent by the end of June, Sheng revealed.

Bad loan ratios of all Chinese lenders came in at 0.96 percent by the end of March, while the provision coverage was 292 percent, according to official data.

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