Singapore bank lending down for 7th straight month in September: MAS data

SINGAPORE (THE BUSINESS TIMES) – Bank lending in September dipped for the seventh straight session on weaker business loans, preliminary data from the Monetary Authority of Singapore showed on Friday (Oct 30).

Loans through the domestic banking unit – which captures lending in all currencies, but reflects mainly Singapore dollar lending – stood at $677.46 billion in September, compared with $677.86 billion a month ago.

Loans to businesses fell 0.3 per cent to $421.28 billion in September, from $422.54 billion in August. Notably, loans to financial institutions were down for the second straight month, falling 1.9 per cent to $99.38 billion.

The single-largest business lending segment – building and construction – extended its growth. Loans to the construction industry rose 0.7 per cent in September over the month to $150.91 billion.

Consumer loans in September climbed 0.3 per cent to $256.18 billion month on month, lifted by housing loans and share financing.

Housing loans, which make up three-quarters of consumer lending, inched into positive territory for the first time since January, up 0.1 per cent month on month to $199.09 billion in September.

Loans for share financing grew 6.5 per cent to $1.87 billion, from $1.75 billion in August.

From a year, ago, total bank lending was down 1 per cent.

Business loans in September contracted 0.2 per cent from a year ago, while loans to consumers slid 2.5 per cent over the same period.

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