JIS News

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  • The Bank of Jamaica (BOJ) says credit extended to private-sector businesses and households by commercial banks, merchant banks and building societies has increased by 15.2 per cent over the 12-month period ending March 2019.
  • Governor Brian Wynter says this is 1.4 per cent higher than the 13.8 per cent out-turn for the corresponding period last year.
  • He was speaking at the Central Bank’s quarterly briefing at the BOJ Training Institute in downtown Kingston on Tuesday (May 22).

The Bank of Jamaica (BOJ) says credit extended to private-sector businesses and households by commercial banks, merchant banks and building societies has increased by 15.2 per cent over the 12-month period ending March 2019.

Governor Brian Wynter says this is 1.4 per cent higher than the 13.8 per cent out-turn for the corresponding period last year.

He was speaking at the Central Bank’s quarterly briefing at the BOJ Training Institute in downtown Kingston on Tuesday (May 22).

Bank of Jamaica (BOJ) Governor, Brian Wynter (right), emphasises a point while addressing Tuesday’s (May 21) quarterly briefing at the BOJ’s Training Institute in downtown Kingston. Listening is BOJ Deputy Governor, Dr. Wayne Robinson.

 

Mr. Wynter pointed out that the pace of accelerated credit expansion is consistent with current and previous BOJ policy decisions.

While acknowledging that the growth in private-sector credit, particularly over the last three months, “is very encouraging”, Mr. Wynter contended that “it is still not fast enough”.

“Based on our (BOJ) estimates of the capacity of the economy, faster growth is possible without causing inflation to rise above the [four to six per cent] target,” the Governor said.

Meanwhile, Mr. Wynter advised that the BOJ’s announcement last week of a reduction in the deposit-taking institutions cash reserve requirement by two percentage points, to seven per cent effective June 3, will add another $12.3 billion to the financial system.

The Governor noted that the reduction, the second for 2019 following a three per cent lowering of the reserve requirement in March, will support the provision of more credit to businesses and households “at lower rates and on better terms”.

Mr. Wynter pointed out that the cash reserve reductions are possible because of macroeconomic stability in Jamaica.