Montenegro’s bank assets growth slows to 2.9% at end-Jan 2014 on falling lending activity

By bne IntelliNews February 24, 2014

Montenegro’s commercial bank assets grew 2.9% y/y to EUR 2.96bn at end-January 2014, slowing from a 5.4% y/y hike at end-December, due to falling lending activity, data from the central bank (CBCG) showed. The total assets-to-GDP ratio stood at 86.7% at end-January, down from 87.7% a year ago, according to IntelliNews calculations.

Bank loans shrank 2.9% y/y to EUR 2.22bn at end-January, following a 3% y/y rise the month before, dragged down by falling corporate lending and weaker growth of retail loans.

Corporate loans swung to a 6.2% y/y contraction in January from a 1.6% increase at end-December, with credits totalling EUR 1.0bn.

Retail loans went up 2.8% y/y to EUR 881.1mn, easing from a 8.9% y/y growth the month before.

Loans to financial institutions, which accounted for 15% of total loans, continued retreating, shrinking 19.6% y/y to EUR 356mn at end-January, after a 16.8% y/y contraction at end-December.

The average monthly lending growth stood at 5.5% in 2013 reversing a three-year period of decline supported by both the corporate and retail segments.

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