Montenegro's commercial bank assets grew 5.4% y/y to EUR 2.96bn at end-December 2013 , registering the same growth rate as the month before, data from the central bank (CBCG) showed. The total assets-to-GDP ratio stood at 89.4% at end-December, up from 84.1% a year ago, according to IntelliNews calculations. Bank's loans went up 3% y/y to EUR 2.4bn at end-December, slowing from a 5.4% rise the month before due to weaker corporate lending. Corporate loans increased 1.6% y/y to EUR 1,014mn , following a 3.2% y/y hike the month before as lending to state-owned and foreign companies declined over the period. Retail loans growth strengthened to 8.9% y/y with credits totaling EUR 881mn at end-December from a 8.4% y/y hike at end-November. Loans to financial institutions, which accounted for 15% of total loans, continued retreating, shrinking 16.8% y/y to EUR 360mn at end-December after a 12.2% y/y contraction at end-November. The average monthly lending growth stood at 5.5% in 2013 reversing a three-year period of decline supported by both the corporate and retail segments. Nonetheless, credit supply remains constrained by the high level of NPL (at nearly 18% as of end-November).
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