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Lack of demand for corporate loans, says SBI

Retail lending, however, is growing at a decent rate, the bank said.

Retail lending, however, is growing at a decent rate, the bank said.   | Photo Credit: V. Sreenivasa Murthy

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‘Retail lending growing at decent rate’

State Bank of India (SBI), the country’s largest lender, said on Thursday it was witnessing a lack of demand for corporate loans, a category where growth is also ‘muted’. Retail lending, however, is growing at a decent rate, the bank said.

“Corporate lending growth is at 2-3%. Clearly, there is a lack of demand for corporate loans. However, retail lending [home loans, personal loans] is seeing reasonable growth at 18%,” SBI MD Arijit Basu told reporters here.

He said the SBI Purchasing Managers’ Index (PMI) has crossed the 50% mark for the first time last month.

“This shows sentiments are slightly improving now.” Asked about the status of non-performing assets (NPA), Mr. Basu said that gross NPAs declined by 1.5% to 7.2% as on September 30.

Net NPAs stood at 2.79%, he said, adding the bank has increased the provision coverage ratio (PCR) to 82 per cent from 60 per cent.

“Our focus is to strengthen the balance sheet. New slippages will be contained within a certain range of 1.5 per cent every quarter. Corporate slippages have also come down,” he said.

On bank frauds, he said SBI would make its 58,000-odd ATMs chip-enabled by the end of the current fiscal.

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Printable version | Jan 22, 2020 7:42:40 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/business/lack-of-demand-for-corporate-loans-says-sbi/article30196727.ece

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