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Banks' lending rates slightly drop in Jan.


Lending rates on fresh loans extended by banks in South Korea dropped slightly from a month earlier in January, central bank data showed Friday.

The average interest rate on all new bank loans came to 3.19 percent in the month, down 0.03 percentage point from the previous month, according to preliminary data from the Bank of Korea.

The rate on all outstanding loans came to 3.38 percent, down 0.02 percentage point from December.

The average rate on fresh corporate loans slipped 0.04 percentage point to 3.32 percent over the cited period, while the rate on new household loans came to 2.95 percent, down 0.03 percentage point.

However, the average rate on fresh home-backed loans gained 0.06 percentage point to 2.51 percent, an apparent outcome of the government's latest anti-speculation measures in December that further tightened regulations on mortgages and home-backed loans.

The average rate paid by banks on fresh deposits dipped 0.06 percentage point to 1.54 percent, widening the gap between the rates charged and paid by banks to 1.65 percent from 1.62 percent in December. (Yonhap)