Turkish banks’ loans rose by 0.92% w/w to TRY 875bn (EUR 367bn) as of May 17, according to the latest data from the banking watchdog BDDK. The y/y growth slightly decelerated to 19.84% as of May 17 from 20% y/y as of May 10 while banks’ loans rose 8.63% compared to end-2012. The loan growth rate compared to end-2012 was 7.63% as of May 10.
Sector players tended to expand loan volume, despite the monetary and government authorities’ concerns over the potential risks from the country’s current account deficit. Given weak GDP growth in 2012 and recently strengthening capital inflows, the central bank cut the benchmark rates further in the last monetary policy committee meeting which is expected to result in declines in market rates and, as a result, which may lead to further expansion in loan volume. The central bank targets to keep loan growth at about 15% y/y in 2013.
In Q1, CA deficit decreased by 2% y/y to USD 15.9bn from USD 16.3bn a year ago. In parallel with a slower growth, the CA deficit declined to USD 47.5bn in 2012, just around 6% of the country’s GDP, from a record high of USD 75.1bn in 2011. Central Bank governor Erdem Basci recently argued that under current global economic conjuncture a 6% of CA deficit (of GDP) is manageable but an ideal CA deficit/GDP ratio for the Turkish economy is 5%.
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