Bank Lending Survey (BLS): Q4 2019
21/01/2020 - Press Releases
Loans to non-financial corporations
In the fourth quarter of 2019, the overall credit standards for loans to non-financial corporations (NFCs) remained unchanged (see Chart 1) compared with the third quarter of 2019, in line with the expectations expressed in the previous quarterly survey round. Moreover, banks expect that the overall credit standards will in general remain unchanged during the first quarter of 2020.
The terms and conditions for loans to NFCs remained unchanged from the third quarter, although banks’ loan margins on ordinary loans narrowed to some extent.
Demand for loans to NFCs increased somewhat compared to the previous quarter (see Chart 2), due to the increased financing needs for fixed investments, mergers and corporate restructuring as well as for debt refinancing. During the next quarterly survey round, the demand for loans from NFCs is expected to remain almost unchanged, although a slight increase in the demand for loans to small and medium sized enterprises is expected.
The ratio of rejected applications for loans to NFCs remained basically unchanged during the fourth quarter of 2019 against the previous quarter (see Chart 3).
Loans to households
In the fourth quarter of 2019, the credit standards as well as the terms and conditions for loans to households remained almost unchanged compared with the third quarter of 2019 (see Chart 1), in line with the expectations expressed in the previous quarterly survey round. The demand for loans to households increased somewhat compared with the third quarter of 2019, both for housing and consumer loans (see Chart 2), mainly due to increased consumer confidence, improved housing market prospects, a rise in the financing needs for expenditures for consumer durable goods, as well as the favourable level of interest rates.
Banks expect that credit standards for granting loans to households will remain unchanged during the first quarter of 2020, while the demand for loans to households is expected to somewhat increase.
The ratio of rejected applications for loans to households remained basically unchanged during the fourth quarter of 2019 (see Chart 3) compared with the previous one.
Chart 1 - Credit Standards (Average)
Chart 2 - Demand (Average)
Chart 3 - Share of rejected applications (Average)
Note: The next Press Release on the “Bank Lending Survey” for Q1 2020 will be published on 28 April 2020, in accordance with the Advance release calendar, published on the Bank of Greece website.
 For more information on the Bank Lending Survey, see
 Information regarding the BLS methodology is available at: