LENDING & CREDIT | Cesar Tordesillas, China

China's banking authorities deny 30% home lending discounts

The PBOC said reports that it allowed 30 percent lending discounts to first-time home buyers contain deliberate misinterpretations.

The People's Bank of China issued a circular that allows banks to give a 20-percent discount for corporate lending, reiterating that the bottom line for individual home lending rate remains at 70 percent of the benchmark, a regular practice after benchmark rate adjustment.

Some media reports have deliberately misinterpreted the central bank's policy and seem to be sensationalizing the message, an unnamed spokesperson with the PBOC said.

The spokesperson stressed that the central bank, as well as other government regulators, have maintained effective policy guidance and prudent regulation over individual home lending.

In a separate statement, the China Banking Regulatory Commission, China's top banking regulator, also refuted media reports that the CBRC has reduced risk-weighting for individual mortgage loans.

These reports represent a "complete misunderstanding," said the CBRC in a statement on its website, adding that the risk-weighting for personal mortgage loans remains at 50 percent, which is in line with current regulations.

The CBRC set the 50-percent requirement in its newly published rules on commercial bank asset management, which are different from the previously drafted rules that set the risk-weighting of mortgage loans for first-time home buyers at 45 percent and that for second-home buyers at 60 percent.

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