UK markets closed
  • FTSE 100

    7,585.46
    +20.54 (+0.27%)
     
  • FTSE 250

    20,372.52
    +123.78 (+0.61%)
     
  • AIM

    968.25
    +10.25 (+1.07%)
     
  • GBP/EUR

    1.1763
    +0.0022 (+0.19%)
     
  • GBP/USD

    1.2633
    +0.0027 (+0.22%)
     
  • BTC-GBP

    22,780.92
    -643.41 (-2.75%)
     
  • CMC Crypto 200

    625.79
    -3.71 (-0.59%)
     
  • S&P 500

    4,158.24
    +100.40 (+2.47%)
     
  • DOW

    33,212.96
    +575.77 (+1.76%)
     
  • CRUDE OIL

    115.15
    +1.06 (+0.93%)
     
  • GOLD FUTURES

    1,857.00
    +3.10 (+0.17%)
     
  • NIKKEI 225

    26,781.68
    +176.84 (+0.66%)
     
  • HANG SENG

    20,697.36
    +581.16 (+2.89%)
     
  • DAX

    14,462.19
    +230.90 (+1.62%)
     
  • CAC 40

    6,515.75
    +105.17 (+1.64%)
     

Lending to euro zone businesses slowed in early weeks of Ukraine war

·1-min read
Buildings are seen in the Canary Wharf business district, amid the outbreak of the coronavirus disease (COVID-19), in London

FRANKFURT (Reuters) - Bank lending to euro zone businesses slowed in March, reinforcing expectations that Russia's war in Ukraine would prompt both banks and corporations to tread cautiously, data from the European Central Bank showed on Friday.

With the war in Ukraine sapping confidence, policymakers are increasingly worried that banks will tighten access to credit, weighing on an economy that is already likely to stagnate, at best, during the first half of the year.

Growth in lending to businesses slowed to 4.2% in March from 4.5% a month earlier, a still healthy figure in line with pre-Covid trends.

Lending to households meanwhile accelerated to 4.5% from 4.4%, its highest rate since late 2008.

The M3 measure of money circulating in the euro zone grew by 6.3%, the slowest pace in two years - that is before the ECB boosted its bond purchases to respond to the coronavirus pandemic.

Banks in the ECB's quarterly lending survey already signalled their intention to curb access to credit in the second quarter, even as demand for fund was likely to rise.

Still, with inflation at a record high, the ECB is almost certain to cut stimulus further when it next meets on June 9, ending bond buys in July and signalling a rate rise in the third quarter.

(Reporting by Balazs Koranyi; Editing by Francesco Canepa)

Our goal is to create a safe and engaging place for users to connect over interests and passions. In order to improve our community experience, we are temporarily suspending article commenting