Lending rates up again

Staff Writer

COMMERCIAL banks have again increased Minimum Lending Rates (MLR), making the already ailing Zimbabwean economy deteriorate even further.

vetica, sans-serif”>Banks recently hiked lending rates from approximately 72% to about 80%.

They have now increased the rates from the 80% to between 90 to 95%.

This means customers now need to pay nearly double the amount borrowed and this discourages borrowing and as a result reduces consumption.

“Minimum Lending Rates increase everyday,” said a banker at Zimbank.

Not all the banks are charging the same lending rates.

Banks such as Barbican Bank and NMB have the highest rates, charging 95% and 91% respectively.

At NMB the minimum rate is about 84% and they add a bank margin of 7%, amounting to 81%.

Trust Bank Ltd announced that it had increased its MLR from 80% to 88,5%.

First Bank Corporation Ltd increased its minimum lending rate to 85%.

With the lowest rate is Royal Bank, which has an MLR of 75%.

The bank says it has not increased its rate for quite some time now.

Despite these frequent hikes of lending rates, they still lag behind the galloping inflation which reached a record 399,5% as of July.

Analysts however predict the rate will continue rising to bash the 500% mark by year-end.