Panel SA: Optimism with economy leads banks to expand credit offer, says Febraban

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This Wednesday (16), Febraban (Brazilian Federation of Banks) is publishing a survey showing that banks have raised their projections for the supply of credit in the country, consolidating the prospect of economic recovery.

According to the survey, obtained by Panel SA, the forecast for growth of the total credit portfolio this year increased from 13.9%, in September, to 14.1%, after Lula’s election. It is the seventh consecutive high, according to Febraban.

This growth would represent around R$ 2 billion more in the offer of credit lines, considering the change in the institutions’ perception in the last 45 days – the period between one survey and another.

Although the consolidation of the political scenario has collaborated, the optimism of the banking sector is mainly due to the re-edition of public credit programs, such as Pronampe and FGI-Peac, which continue to have high demand for companies offering low risk for creditors.

For 2023, projections for expansion of the total credit portfolio rose from 8% to 8.4% in the period considered. The survey is carried out every 45 days, shortly after the release of the Monetary Policy Committee (Copom) minutes, which defines the Selic, the economy’s basic interest rate.

“For this year, the positive revision is due to the improvement in expectations of economic activity”, said Rubens Sardenberg, director of Economy, Prudential Regulation and Risks at Febraban.

“For 2023, the expectation of an increase in the earmarked portfolio rose slightly, but in the portfolio with free resources, the adjustment was relevant [passando de 9,3% na pesquisa anterior para 10%]🇧🇷

In free credit, the recovery of the economy boosted consumption, which benefited lines such as credit cards and personal loans.

This component incorporated the projection of the portfolio of individuals with free resources to increase – from 17.2 to 18.2%. Among legal entities, it was practically stable (14.3%).

In the banks’ perception, however, there was a worsening in default expectations in this portfolio. For this year, the projection rose from 3.9% to 4.3%.

In 2023, it increased from 4.2% to 4.6%. Currently, the default rate of this portfolio is 4.0%.

Indicators

Six out of ten of the interviewed banks believe that the Copom will start to reduce the basic interest rate from the 2nd quarter of 2023 (May or June). Consecutive cuts are considered that, by the end of next year, would take the Selic to 13.25% per year.

For most institutions (70%), the economy slows down in the coming quarters. For 2023, the GDP growth expectation is between 0.5% and 1%. For 25% of respondents, this retraction will be worse, with a growth of, at most, 0.5%.

Inflation measured by the IPCA (National Consumer Price Index) should exceed the target ceiling, hitting 4.75% in 2023. For the exchange rate, the expectation is that it will remain between R$ 5.20 throughout the first half of next year.

Julio Wiziack with Paulo Ricardo Martins and Diego Felix

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