Bank delinquency remains at a minimum in February and stands at 4.55%

The variable is still far from the 4.82% registered a year ago, something favored by the support measures put in place these months.

Facade of the Bank of Spain in a file image.

The delinquency of loans granted by banks, savings banks and cooperatives to individuals and companies rose slightly in February to 4,55%, compared to the previous 4.54%, although it is still below the 4.82% of a year earlier, according to provisional data from the Bank of Spain.

In the second month of the year the bad credits they experienced a slight increase of 0.14% compared to January, to 55,142 million euros. This data is 3.32% lower than that of February 2020.

At the same time, in February there was a contraction in total credit in the sector, which stood at 1,211 billion euros, close to 0.1% below January and at its lowest level since March 2020. The figure is, however, 2.36% higher than the figure of a year earlier.

The figures include the methodological change in the classification of Credit Financial Establishments (EFC), which since January 2014 have ceased to be considered within the category of credit institutions.

The increase in the delinquency ratio, which occurs at the same time as there is a fall in total credit granted, comes in a context in which the main international and national organizations, as well as credit firms, have been warning that in the years 2021 and 2022, the default arising from the coronavirus crisis will emerge.

Contained delinquency

Non-performing loans would have remained contained during the last months of 2020 due to the different government measures, although since January of this year small increases in this ratio have already begun to be observed. Some estimates point to an increase of up to 8% in 2022, as public support fades.

Excluding methodological changes, the delinquency ratio would be 4.66%, since the credit balance was 1,182 billion euros in February 2021, excluding credit from EFCs.

The provisions of financial entities stood at 40,303 million euros in the second month of the year, 149 million above January (+ 0.37%) and 12.3% more than in the same month of 2020.