BOFIT Viikkokatsaus / BOFIT Weekly 2018/06

The CBR reports that the bank credit stock rose by 3.5 % when exchange rate shifts are included. The stock of corporate loans was largely unchanged, while household lending soared. The stock of household lending grew by 13 % last year, and stood at 12 trillion rubles ($200 billion) at year's end. According to various credit bureaus, the total amount of new lending last year reached 5.7 trillion rubles, an increase of about 40 % from 2016. Highest growth was registered for unsecured credit card debt and housing loans. The microcredit industry also expanded rapidly. Such speedy growth has raised concerns about over-indebtedness. Even with rising wages, the real incomes of Russians fell by 1.7 % last year.

Small banks only account for a tiny share of household lending. Russia's 5o largest banks hold about 90 % of all household loans. While only about half of Russian banks are registered in Moscow, over 90 % of household credit is granted by Moscow-based banks. About a third of borrowers live in Moscow or the surrounding Central Federal District.