Japan Bank Loans Grow Record 6.8 Pct in June amid Epidemic

Economy

Tokyo, July 7 (Jiji Press)--The combined balance of loans at 113 banks in Japan at the end of June rose 6.8 pct from a year before to 535,407.6 billion yen, posting record growth for the second straight month, the Japanese Bankers Association (Zenginkyo) said Tuesday.

The lending balance hit an all-time high for four months in a row, reflecting strong demand for funds among businesses in the country amid the novel coronavirus crisis.

Lending, mainly to midsize and small companies, is likely to continue growing as a program for private-sector financial institutions to extend effectively interest-free unsecured loans kicked off in May, sources said.

In June, the lending balance at city banks, including the country's three megabanks, increased 9.4 pct to 216,845.4 billion yen. The balance was up 5.3 pct at 225,573.3 billion yen at regional banks and 6.0 pct at 50,901 billion yen at second-tier regional banks.

The sizes of growth were all steepest on record. The balance at regional banks hit a record high for the 16th consecutive month.

[Copyright The Jiji Press, Ltd.]

Jiji Press