Bank of Ireland approves €3.6bn of new SME loans
Bank of Ireland said it approved €3.6bn of new credit for Irish business in the nine months to the end of September, up 13pc on the same period last year.
The figures are boosted by lending to farmers, including approving loans to buy 500 acres of land a week. Bank of Ireland said it is responsible for more than half of all new lending to Irish small and medium sized enterprises (SMEs)
Its lending figures refer to new and increased lending, and do not include restructures or loan book acquisitions.
Agriculture, motor and retail sectors all continue to grow in the first nine months of the year, the bank said. The abolition of milk quotas is continuing to influence Bank of Ireland's "carefully considered agri expansion," it said. The uptick in the construction sector has seen increased financing of commercial vehicles, as white vans return to Irish roads.
The light commercial vehicle market is up 49pc on the same period last year, according to the bank.
Bank of Ireland received just under 50,000 applications for new or increased credit in the period to the end of September, a 9pc increase compared with last year, it said.
The bank said it had approved 88pc of applications, with both applications and approvals up on last year.