© Reuters. FILE PHOTO: An employee of the Korea Exchange Bank counts US one hundred dollar bills during a photo opportunity at the bank’s headquarters in Seoul.
(Reuters) – Loan officers at U.S. banks reported easing standards on most commercial and domestic lending in the first three months of the year as more of the country reopened amid accelerating loan rates. vaccination. Standards on commercial real estate lending were largely unchanged, while banks reported stricter standards for loans for construction and land development, according to loan officers responding to the Federal Reserve survey released Monday. Meanwhile, demand was weaker for commercial loans to large and medium-sized companies and for non-agricultural non-residential loans, and was unchanged for commercial loans to smaller companies; while demand for construction, land development and multi-family loans increased, the survey showed. The US economy grew 6.4% annualized in the first quarter, driven by consumer spending. The Fed’s survey showed that during the first quarter, demand for home loans strengthened, while demand for credit cards and other consumer loans was unchanged. Despite the recent easing trend, banks have generally tightened policies for commercial and consumer credit, as well as for commercial real estate loans, since the onset of the pandemic, the Fed reported. Large banks relaxed credit policies on investment grade loans to large companies, and small banks tightened standards, especially for smaller and lower investment grade companies.