Euro zone banks have strengthened lending significantly since the sovereign debt crisis, the ECB said

FRANKFURT, Jan 31 (Reuters) – Euro zone banks have tightened access to credit for companies since the 2011 credit crisis and are expected to continue to do so as they turn more towards the economy in the amid financing costs, a study by the European Central Bank. show on Tuesday.

But demand for loans from businesses and households also fell, with the drop in demand for mortgages the biggest on record on the back of high interest rates and declining confidence, it showed. in the ECB’s quarterly Monetary Survey.

The results of the BLS could play into the hands of ECB policymakers who are making the case for modest increases in the coming months at a policy meeting on Thursday.

26 percent of banks surveyed by the ECB said they made their lending standards for companies more stringent in the last quarter of last year, the biggest tightening since the 2011.

Credit conditions also tightened for consumer credit and mortgages – a trend banks expect to continue this quarter.

Report by Francesco Canepa; directed by Balazs Koranyi

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