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Bank Loans, Profit Up

Retail lending rose 2.2 percent in December, the biggest gain since September 2008, after a 1.5 percent increase in November, the Central Bank said Monday in a report. Corporate loans advanced 1.1 percent, compared with 1.6 percent the previous month.

Overdue bank loans dropped to 5.7 percent of all lending in December, the lowest level since July 2009, according to calculations based on the report. Delinquent corporate loans improved to 5.3 percent from 5.6 percent in November, and nonperforming consumer loans totaled 6.9 percent, compared with 7.3 percent a month earlier.

The banking industry posted a combined profit of 573.4 billion rubles ($19.5 billion) last year, almost triple the 2009 figure of 205.1 billion rubles, the Central Bank said. 


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