Non-performing loans hit TL 44 bln mark in 2015

The amount of non-performing consumer loans reached TL 44.8 billion as of the third quarter of 2015, according to figures from the Banking Regulation and Supervision Agency (BDDK).
The figure marks a significant year-on-year increase, as the 2014 total was registered as TL 35.7 billion in the third quarter. As consumer goods have grown expensive in a year that has witnessed the rapid fall of the Turkish lira against the US dollar, consumers have become more dependent on loans and consumer morale has also fallen. Non-performing loans only decreased in the province of Hatay and among those living abroad. They rose in every other province within Turkey. The province of Kilis saw a 68 percent increase in the amount of such loans, while Kocaeli, Mersin, Siirt and Kahramanmarai all reported surges of between 40 and 60 percent. The province of Istanbul accounted for nearly a third of the countryand’s non-performing loans, a total of TL 14.5 billion, and stood for a 26 percent increase from 2014. The amount of total cash credit granted in Istanbul as of the third quarter of this year stood at TL 611 billion, a heavy increase from TL 484.1 billion during the same period last year.
Millions of Turks have multiple credit cards and citizens are continuing to rely on cash loans from banks, in some cases to pay off other existing debts. The countryand’s economy has been largely dependent on consumer spending for a number of years, though much of this spending was debt-fueled as credit cards were handed out freely, in some cases via a simple text message. The battered lira has resulted in a weakened purchasing power as domestic agricultural products have even risen as the costs of expenses have been driven up due to the devaluation.


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