Lending portfolio ‘stable’
An increasing number of Barbadians are consolidating their debts but many of them have not lost their appetite for borrowing.
Levere Thompson, retail manager of the Republic Bank Mortgage Centre as well as the bank’s Warrens branch, told BARBADOS BUSINESS AUTHORITY that mortgages, car loans, credit cards, and personal loans were “holding their own” in a competitive market.
Speaking recently as the mortgage centre hosted a loans fair at its Belleville, St Michael office, Thompson said while consumers were still seeking loans they were doing so in way that did not substantially increase their monthly payments.
“We find today now that the emphasis is really on getting a manageable repayment, so people are coming and consolidating their debts from various institutions in order to get one manageable repayment that they can at least meet their other living expenses,” he said.
“We find that there still an appetite especially for the debt consolidation loans, our credit cards are doing well, our mortgages are holding their own and personal loans. We had a loan campaign for the Christmas holidays and we exceeded our target by 148 per cent, so we are doing pretty well.”
Thompson said the market was in “the slow period so we decided to hold this event to at least boost our sales and boost business for the centre here at Belleville”.
“For the first half of the year we have met our targets, our expectations have been there. With the economic climate there is always a challenge but we are trying to do things so that at least we give ourselves a fighting chance to come out where we want to come out at the end of the year,” he said.
“Other branches will be putting on similar events in order to boost sales as well and the branch as a whole will be putting on events that will allow Barbadians to avail themselves of the products and services offered by the bank.
“Based on the economic climate this year has been a little flat compared to the other years but we are still holding our own, there are still some projects out there that we are trying to partner on with various builders, Government etcetera. So we are holding our own and we expect when the other building projects come on stream that we will be a part of it,” he added. (SC)