Loan interest rates are rising, especially hitting companies

Denars / Photo: MIA

In one year, interest rates on newly approved loans in the corporate sector increased from 3,22 percent to 5,02 percent. In households, the growth is from 4,34 to 4,38 percent.

Bank interest rates are rising. This is expected considering the growth of the basic interest rate by the National Bank, which, in turn, dictates the growth of interest and deposits. According to the calculations of the National Bank, the average interest rate on newly approved loans in December 2022 was 4,83 percent, while in December 2021 the average was 3,61 percent. Growth is more pronounced in companies. Among them, in one year the interest rates on newly approved loans increased from 3,22 percent to 5,02 percent. In households, the growth is from 4,34 to 4,38 percent.

But since January 1, bankers are already reporting new upward changes in interest rates. Citizens and businessmen are also dissatisfied.

As an illustration, according to the latest notification released by NLB Bank, since January 1, the interest rates on some of the credit products have increased by as much as 2,75 percentage points. It is about the interest rate for credit cards, allowed overdraft on transaction account and instant loans. In particular, the interest on a Visa credit card increased from 10 percent last year to 12,75 percent. The calculations of the loan calculator installed on this bank show that if you take an instant loan of 120.000 denars today, you will return 137.880 denars in three years.

Businessmen complain that when they need the most money, not only for investments but also for liquidity, considering the current economic situation, there is an increase in interest rates in banks.

For the president of the Business Confederation, Mile Boshkov, interest rate adjustments come as an unplanned cost for investors.

– Companies are feeling the growth of interest rates. In particular, that growth is reflected in large investments, in companies that took large loans, so now the increased interest comes to them as an unforeseen expense - says Boshkov.

The president of the Chamber of Commerce at SSK Sasho Dukovski says that in the second half of the year they expect a loosening of the monetary policy.

- The National Bank is a completely independent institution, but our expectations are that at least in the second half of the next year, there will be a loosening of the monetary policy. Last year, in accordance with the global trend, we had an increase in the basic interest rate, but with the stabilization of prices, the goal of the restrictive monetary policy is achieved, and we should seriously think about its loosening, that is, about reducing interest rates - said Dukoski in an interview with "Sloboden". stamp".

Academician Abdulmenaf Bejeti says that one thing is the perception of citizens and companies regarding the growth of interest rates, but another is the mandated duty of the National Bank.

- It is too early to relax the monetary policy. It does not depend on the state of companies or citizens, but on macroeconomic indicators. Inflation is still high. The first priority of the policies of the National Bank is price stability, together with the stability of the denar. There are excellent experts in the National Bank and policies are based on scientific analyses, Academician Bejeti explained to "Sloboden Pechat".

He says that the banks are the ones making excessive profits, so "the real sector, instead of putting pressure on the National Bank, should direct the pressure on commercial banks".

- Last year, commercial banks finished with record profits. They certainly didn't make them out of savings. The net interest margin approached 4 percentage points. There is a huge difference between the interest rates on loans and deposits - concludes Bezhetti.


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