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Bank Lending Rates Rise Further   
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Some universal banks in the country have begun to review their base lending rates upwards, although the central bank, at its last Monetary Policy Committee (MPC) briefing, maintained its prime rate at 18.5% for the next couple of months.

The prime rate is the rate at which the central bank does overnight lending to the universal banks which serves as a guide for the various banks to set their respective base lending rates, at which they lend to their most favoured customers.

SG-SSB Bank reviewed its base lending rate by 1.2% to 26.95% up from 25.75% even before the MPC took its decision to maintain the price rate at 18.5%. The deputy managing director of Ghana Commercial Bank (GCB), one of the leading universal banks in the country, Samuel Sarpong, told Business Week the bank is currently reviewing its base lending rate, but quickly added it will not go up.

BusinessWeek gathered from most of treasury departments of the various banks that the review process is currently ongoing and it will be announced shortly.

Banks lending rates have risen significantly over the past two year, largely in response to hikes in the prime rate, which itself has risen from a trough of well below 15% around the middle of the decade. Headline inflation which was 20.5% in July 2009 declined marginally to 19.7% in August and further declined by 18.37% by the end of September.
Source: Business Week

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