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Commenting article: Euro Set to Take Over from Lev as Main Bulgarian Loan Currency

The euro has started taking over from the lev, as the main currency preferred by Bulgarian businesses and property owners, data shows.

Bulgarian National Bank (BNB) figures released for January 2009 showed a huge rise in euro denominated loan portfolios.

Euro denominated housing mortgages in January totaled BGN 22.9 M in comparison with BGN 106 M in December 2008. At the same time, households borrowed BGN 21.6 M less lev denominated credits, following a drop of BGN 4.9 M in December.

In October and November, euro loans grew by BGN 9.8 M and BGN 111.3 M respectively. Euro loans totaled BGN 9.9 M and BGN 153.1 M. Over the past five months, the share of euro denominated household mortgages expanded from 45.6% to 48.1% of the total mortgages in Bulgaria.

The trend is mirrored in the consumer credit market, where euro denominated loans account for only 12% but rose for a third month in a row as BGN denominated credits dwindled, the Bulgarian daily newspaper Dnevnik reported Tuesday.

BNB sources added that the Bulgarian credit market has been losing momentum in the recent months as banks give fewer loans and demand weakens, with homebuyers awaiting the predicted drop in property prices but also worrying about their income.

Robin - 10 Mar 2009 // 10:09:10

"The euro has started taking over from the lev, as the main currency preferred by Bulgarian businesses and property owners"

Anybody want to bet against the imminent decoupling of the Lev from the Euro and the formers devaluation?

Chushki - 10 Mar 2009 // 10:21:01

But this is MONSTROUS!! If anything it should be our glorious currency replacing the outmoded, ill-advised and completely nonsensical toy currency called the Euro. Tsar Sergey should demand that Brussels impose the lev on all Euro nations with immediate effect, and if they refuse, then military options should be seriously considered.

mrposhrat - 10 Mar 2009 // 13:12:56

When the Western banks realize that the mutri have been running an apartment building ponzi scheme (pretend that you've sold one complex with the monies from loans to build two more), while creaming off the construction profits. Maybe the Western banks will have to write off 10 Billion Euros. The only solution then will be an IMF bailout and a currency float.

NellieotAmerica - 11 Mar 2009 // 04:34:53

And so much bank hatred, despite the fact that no capitalist system works without a banking system.

It's like saying, "Fcuk cows" and yet wanting a glass of milk with your Oreo cookies. You want the banks to take the their punishment, and yet, probably want them to loan to you too.

Given that a capitalist economy needs a functioning banking system to supply business loans and grease the wheels of everyday commerce, helping banks pay off their counterparties is in fact a good thing.

To the extent our major banks are made whole on their contracts, that strengthens them.

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