Eurozone: Business demand for bank lending declines for the first time in 6 years

Demand for European businesses to lend in the fourth quarter of 2019 fell for the first time in six years, despite a further decline in the key benchmark in the euro area, according to research conducted by the European Central Bank.

‘Net demand for business loans declined in Q4 2019, for the first time since Q4 2013, although the banks expected demand to remain generally stable,’ the ECB notes in its quarterly report on banking lending activity.

‘This drop in net demand is broadly based on a number of large, but also smaller, euro area countries,’ the ECB added.