China's Feb lending misses expectations
BEIJING: Chinese banks extended 620 billion yuan (RM310 billion) in new loans last month, missing market expectations of 750 billion yuan as the central bank moved to withdraw liquidity to ward off inflationary risks.
Although the new loans in February were down sharply from January's 1.07 trillion yuan, they outstripped December's 454.3 billion yuan and November's 522.9 billion yuan, suggesting monetary conditions are loose.
The People's Bank of China (PBOC) started to mop up short-term cash from the banking system in late January. Media has reported that the central bank has signalled to commercial banks to slow lending.
The lending data came a day after the government said inflation rose to a 10-month high in February, while factory output and consumer spending were weaker than forecast.
The PBOC is likely to keep policy settings neutral for most of 2013 to cement the recovery, although the risk may be tilted towards tightening, rather than easing, analysts say. Reuters