Due to the fall of the Euribor rate, the average housing loan interest rate dropped to 2.7% in Estonia in August 2012, Estonia's central bank, Eesti Pank reported.
In August, the amount of new corporate loans and leases rose by almost 25% compared to last year. The relatively strong growth was primarily due to the increase in the short-term financing. Short-term corporate loans and leases granted by banks totalled EUR 546 million in August. This is the highest level of recent years and 34% more than a year ago. Loans to trading companies constituted the largest share (39%) of the total turnover of corporate loans. In recent months borrowing in that sector has also been notably stronger than in the corporate sector in general. Loans to transport businesses have also grown significantly year-on-year.
Activity in the housing loan market remained at the level seen also in previous months. Housing loans granted to households amounted to EUR 54 million in August, which is 22% more than a year ago. The annual growth in households' car leasing also remained strong, reaching 26%.
The loan and lease portfolio of Estonian companies and households increased by EUR 4.5 million in August. In April 2012, the volume of the banks' financing portfolio started to grow again following a decline that had lasted for more than three years. In August, both the stock of corporate loans and the stock of housing loans grew.
At the end of the month the total volume of corporate and household loans and leases was EUR 14.6 billion, which is only 0.1% less than a year ago. The change in the loan portfolio was influenced by the reclassification of some non-profit associations which meant that they were considered to be part of the government sector. If the reclassification had not taken place, the annual growth rate of the financing portfolio of the non-financial sector would have turned positive already in August.
The quality of the loan portfolio did not change much in August. The level of loans overdue for more than 60 days decreased modestly, by EUR 4 million, and their share in the loan portfolio was 4.3%, i.e. unchanged from the previous month.
The average interest rate on housing loans decreased to 2.7% in August. The drop of more than 0.2 percentage points was due to the fall of the Euribor rate. The average interest margin of housing loans remained 2%, i.e. at the average level of 2012. The average interest rate on long-term corporate loans remained unchanged at 3.4%.
The annual growth in deposits picked up in August and reached 11%. Deposits increased by EUR 58 million to EUR 8.5 billion. Stronger growth in August was due to the increase in corporate deposits, just as in July. However, household deposits decreased, which is characteristic of summer months.