June 8, 2012 / 7:49 AM / 6 years ago

Philippines' April bank lending growth at 4-mth high

* April loan growth net of RRPs 19.2 vs March's 18.7 pct
    * S/adj lending net of RRPs up 1.9 pct in April vs March

    MANILA, June 8 (Reuters) - The Philippine central bank on
Friday released data on lending by commercial banks in April:   
   KEY DATA                 Apr   Mar    Feb    Jan   Dec   Nov 
                                  (pct change y/y)      	
Total loans net of reverse      	
repurchase (RRP) deals      19.2  18.7   18.0  19.1   19.3  22.5
Total loans with RRP        16.0  17.7   16.1  16.6   16.4  19.3
Seasonally adjusted data          (pct change mth on mth)     	
Total loans net of RRP      1.9    2.1    0.9   1.3   -0.5   2.1
Total loans with RRP        0.9    2.7    0.9   1.2    0.4   0.4
   KEY POINTS                        	
   * Production loans, comprising more than four-fifths of
commercial banks' loan portfolios, grew 19.7 percent in April
from a year earlier, a three-month high.	
   * Consumer loan growth was 17.5 percent in April from a year
ago, the slowest in four months, due mainly to the slowdown in
auto loans.	
   * The central bank said in a statement bank lending will
likely remain strong in the months ahead given the economy's
robust growth in the first quarter.	
   * The Philippine economy grew at its strongest quarterly pace
in two years in January-March, powered by government spending,
domestic demand and an export rebound, though analysts cautioned
it may lose momentum quickly given headwinds from Europe.
   * Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas Governor Amando Tetangco has
said there was less need for monetary authorities to support
growth after the economy's faster than expected expansion in the
first quarter.	
   * The central bank cut its key policy rate by a combined 50
basis points in January and March, taking advantage of subdued
inflation to boost economic activity in the face of a slowing
global economy. It next reviews policy on June 14. 	
   * Most analysts in a Reuters quarterly poll in April expected
the benchmark rate to be kept at 4.0 percent for the whole year
on manageable inflation and with authorities seeking to protect
domestic demand.    	
    * Manila targets economic growth this year of 5 to 6
percent. In 2011, growth was 3.7 percent, below the government's
 (Reporting by Karen Lema; Editing by Rosemarie Francisco)
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