Russia: Retail Lending Sector Up 22.8%

UrBC, Moscow, January 28, 2019. The Russian banking market’s overall assets increased by 6.9% last year, mainly through the banks’ more proactive lending policies. The accumulated loan book (to both private borrowers and non-financial organizations) went up by 10.7% in 2018. The increase was most noticeable in the retail lending sector (+22.8%), the Bank of Russia’s website indicates.

According to the Bank of Russia, banks tried to encourage borrowers throughout the year by offering reduced interest rates; a certain upward economic trend and people’s rising disposable incomes were also a factor. The bank’s loan books also improved in quality.

It is also reported that private customers have been placing their funds with the banks less actively lately, which is believed to be because of increased spending/decreased saving trends. Still, private customers’ bank savings rose by 6.5% last year, while those of businesses and organizations rose by 6%.

Russian banks incurred RUB 1.345 trillion worth of profits in 2018, which exceeded the figures for the year 2017 (RUB 0.79 trillion) by 1.7 times.


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