Mortgages extended by domestic banks last month increased NT$70.25 billion (US$2.52 billion) from September, while construction loans increased by NT$23.95 billion, data released on Thursday by the central bank showed.
The monthly increases were higher than September’s increases of NT$60.96 billion in mortgages and NT$19.21 billion in construction loans.
It was also the largest monthly growth for mortgages since July, as people resumed buying houses after the easing of a COVID-19 outbreak that started in May. Housing transactions also picked up speed after Ghost Month, which this year took place from Aug. 8 to Sept. 6.
Photo: I-Hwa Cheng, Bloomberg
The central bank data showed that mortgages and construction loans have increased every month this year, pushing their outstanding balances to historic highs of NT$8.61 trillion and NT$2.73 trillion respectively last month.
However, their annual growth has gradually slowed, an indication that the central bank’s selective credit control measures for the market might be working, the Chinese-language Liberty Times (sister paper of the Taipei Times) reported on Friday, quoting central bank officials.
Last month, mortgages increased 9.37 percent year-on-year, down 0.01 percentage points from September and the fourth consecutive monthly drop, while construction loans increased 15.25 percent, the smallest expansion since July last year, the data showed.
Since March last year, the central bank has implemented several measures to rein in rising housing prices, such as increasing the cost and limiting the source of funds for property buyers through loan-to-value ratio caps, while the central bank and the Financial Supervisory Commission have conducted special inspections of domestic banks to determine whether they are exercising solid risk management on real-estate lending.
However, it remains to be seen whether the downward trend in the annual growth of mortgages and construction loans is to continue, as housing sales appear to remain robust and the market is entering its peak season, central bank officials said.
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