BSP: Consumer lending up 15 pct in March
MANILA, Philippines - Consumer loans by universal, commercial and thrift banks rose 15% to P647.1 billion in March, according to data from the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas.
The BSP said the rise in consumer loans was matched by a slight decline in the ratio of soured loans to consumer loans. As of March, the non-performing consumer loans ratio fell to 6.2% from 6.8% a year ago.
"The increase in consumer lending to auto, residential real estate and other CLs in March this year can be attributed to favorable macroeconomic condition and continued inflow of dollar remittances," the BSP said.
The BSP noted that based on industry figures, universal, commercial and thrift banks "have adequate safety nets against credit risks arising from consumer lending as they set aside 68.7% of loan loss reserves to non-performing CLs in end-March."
Non-performing consumer loans account for just one percent of the banks' total loan portfolio.
Further, the BSP noted the percentage of bank consumer loans to the total loan portfolio in the Philippines is lower than other Southeast Asian countries.
The BSP said the Philippines' 16.5% CL exposure is less than Malaysia's 54.1%, Indonesia's 30.1%, and Singapore's 26.7%.