Euro zone corporate lending growth slows but remains high

Euro zone corporate lending growth slows but remains high

© Reuters. The spread of the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) continues during an extended lockdown in Frankfurt

FRANKFURT (Reuters) – Lending to euro zone companies slowed a touch last month but remained at historically high levels, even as the bloc was back in recession and banks said they were tightening access to credit, European Central Bank data showed on Thursday.

Lending to non-financial corporations in the 19-country euro area slowed to 7.0% in January from 7.1% month earlier but remained near a 10-year high of 7.4% hit in May.

Household lending growth meanwhile slowed to 3% from 3.1%, broadly flatlining since April.

The annual growth rate of the M3 measure of money supply, mostly a reflection of the ECB’s copious bond purchases, accelerated to 12.5% from 12.4%, in line with market expectations.

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