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EU report: Ratio of bad debt has fallen to 4.6 per cent in the bloc

Europe
18.01.2018
By our dpa-correspondent and Europe Online    auf Facebook posten  Auf Twitter posten  
Brussels (dpa) - The ratio of bad debt, known as non-performing loans, has fallen to 4.6 per cent in the European Union, a reduction of one-third since the end of 2014, the European Commission said in a progress report presented on Thursday.

The EU is seeking to reduce bad debt, because non-performing loans threaten banks‘ financial stability and tie up resources that could be otherwise used to foster economic growth and job creation.

Bad debt held by banks piled up in the aftermath of the 2008 financial crisis.

"Today‘s report tells us that the sun is out and the fog is lifting - the EU is making significant headway in tackling non-performing loans," said European Commission Vice-President Valdis Dombrovskis.

The total volume non-performing loans is currently at 950 billion euros (1.16 trillion dollars) in the 28-country bloc.

Despite the reduction in bad debt, the commission is concerned that the ratios of such debt are uneven across the bloc with Greek banks having 46.9 per cent of their total loans classified as non-performing, while the figure is at 0.7 per cent in Luxembourg.

A bank loan is considered non-performing when more than 90 days pass without the borrower paying the agreed instalments or interest.

"We want banks in all EU countries to regain their full capacity to lend to companies and households while preventing build-up of new bad loans," Dombrovskis said.

The commission is set to present a comprehensive package on tackling high ratios of bad loans during the spring.

 

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