Retail loans grew at a faster pace in July compared with the same period last year, according to latest RBI data, as lenders pushed their retail portfolios at a time when demand for credit from the corporate sector remains weak.
In July, retail loans increased 17% to R9,42,313 crore against the corresponding growth number in July 2012 of 13.7%.
The housing loan segment, which is the largest part of banks’ retail portfolio, grew 18.4% to R4,90,455 crore compared with 11% in the corresponding period last year. Banks have been trying to push home loans by reducing rates in that segment over the past few months.
In June, Bank of Baroda (BoB) started offering all home loans at their base rate of 10.25%. BoB was earlier offering them at 10.5-12%, depending on tenure. State Bank of India (SBI), had cut interest rate on home loans by nearly 100 bps in August last year and is offering home loans at 9.95% for loans below R30 lakh and 10.10% for loans above R30 lakh.
On a year-on-year (y-o-y) basis, non-food credit grew 14.8% in July 2013 compared with 16.6% in July 2012, the RBI release said. Credit to industry grew 15.9% in July 2013 to R19,64,954 crore compared with the increase of 18.4% in July 2012. Meanwhile, data showed for medium-sized industries, credit shrunk 1.1%.
“Credit growth accelerated in food processing, gems & jewellery, cement & cement products, wood & wood products, infrastructure, chemical & chemical products, metals, paper, textiles, leather & leather products and beverages & tobacco,” said RBI.
While credit to industry remains sluggish, bankers are hoping to see some improvement in demand from industries as the finance ministry is taking a host of steps to clear large infrastructure projects.