Banks Assets Increase To GH¢51.4b

Total assets of the banking industry in Ghana increased from GH¢36.17 billion in December 2013 to GH¢51.4 billion at the end of December last year.

The figure represents a growth of 42.2 percent year-on-year compared to 32.8 percent growth in December 2013.

Of the total assets, gross advances constituted 46.8 percent compared to 47.1 percent a year earlier.

Dr. Kofi Wampah, Governor of the Bank of Ghana (BoG), who made this know at a press briefing recently in Accra, said the banking industry ended 2014 on a firm note, with industry fundamentals exhibiting a positive outlook.

He said although the top five banks lost significant market shares, domestic banks accounted for the highest number of branches across the country.

Dr Wampah said evidence from the Bank’s survey of credit conditions continues to point to easing of credit to both enterprises and households.

He said Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs) access to credit and loans for mortgages were tightened marginally, stating that access to credit for large enterprises was eased.

“In nominal terms, credit to the private sector grew by 42.1 percent in December 2014 compared to 28.6 percent in the same period last year.

“Real credit growth was 21.9 percent compared to 13.3 percent a year earlier. The credit growth was mainly funded by increased mobilisation of domestic deposits by the banking system,” Dr Wampah said.

He said non-performing loans (NPL) ratio of the banking system adjusted for fully provisioned loans increased to 5.6 percent at the end of December 2014 compared to 4.6 percent in the corresponding period in 2013.

However, the Governor said the unadjusted NPL ratio declined to 11.3 percent from 12 percent in 2013, adding that the capital adequacy ratio for the banking industry fell marginally to 17.9 percent in December 2014 from 18.5 percent in December 2013.

He said it remained well above the prudential limit of 10 percent.

Dr Wampah said interest rates generally trended up on the money market during the year and that the rate on the 91-day instrument increased to 25.8 percent from 19.2 percent.

He said the rate on the 182-day instrument increased to 26.4 percent from 18.7 percent, while the rate on the 1-year note rose to 22.5 percent from 17 percent and the 2-year rate increased to 23 percent from 16.8 percent.

Dr Wampah added that the 3-year bond rate rose to 25.5 percent from 19.2 percent and the weighted average interbank rate increased to 23.7 percent from 16.3 percent in December 2013.

He said the average lending rates of the banks rose to 29 percent from 25.6 percent in December 2013 and the average rate on 3-month term deposits increased to 13.9 percent from 12.5 percent.