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Chinese Banks Reduce Bad Loan Ratio, Expand Total Assets

Chinese banks' average bad loan ratio was reduced to 5.49 percent by the end of September while the total assets of the country's banking industry expanded to 59.3 trillion yuan (US$8.5 trillion), said the country's banking regulator on Monday.

Commercial banks had a total of 1.27 trillion yuan of non-performing loans as of September 30, down 3 billion yuan from the beginning of the year, said China Banking Regulatory Commission (CSRC). The bad loan ratio was 0.67 percentage points higher at the year's beginning.

The country's five largest lenders, Industrial and Commercial Bank of China, China Construction Bank, Bank of China, Agricultural Bank of China and Bank of Communications, had 1.12 billion yuan of bad loans by the end of September, accounting for 7.35 percent of their total advances.

Whereas smaller national lenders, or joint-stock banks, and city banks cut their bad loan ratio to 1.59 percent and 2.54 percent respectively, rural commercial banks and foreign banks had 4.44 percent and 0.50 percent of their lending unpaid, both slightly higher than the levels in the year's beginning.

(Xinhua News Agency October 28, 2008)

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