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The most expensive money in eurozone

08/01/2015 12:56
The lending and deposit rates in Cyprus remain almost double than the rest of the eurozone, despite the slight decline in mortgage interest rates in November.

CB's assurances that the cost of money will be reduced have not yet been reflected in the new ECB data, which show only small variations in the cost of borrowing.

The mortgage rates in Cyprus fell in the eleventh month of the year to 4.74% from 5.05% in October and 4.99% in November 2013. These are the highest rates in the euro area.

Significantly lower are the interest rates in Portugal (3.83%), Slovakia (3.31%), Latvia (3.31%), France (3.31%), Slovenia (3.28%), Italy (3.19%) and the Netherlands (3.19%). The lowest mortgage rates are registered in Finland (1.78%) and Luxembourg (2%).

Throughout the euro area, the mortgage rate fell to 2.85% from 2.90% in the previous month.

Interest rates on business loans

Cyprus has the highest interest rates on business loans as well.
The average interest rate on business loans increased to 5.83% against 5.78% in the previous month and 6.24% in November 2013, remaining the highest in the eurozone.

High business rates are also observed in Greece (5.24%), Malta (4.28%), Portugal (3.96%) and Slovenia (3.75%), while the lowest in Finland (1.87%) and Luxembourg (2.05%).

In the euro area, the interest rate on business loans fell marginally to 3.07% from 3.08%.

Deposit rates drop

As for the interest rates on new deposits in Cyprus, they reached 2.59% in November from 2.67% in October and 2.20% in November 2013.

In Greece, the cost of deposits fell to 1.85% from 1.91% and is the third highest in the eurozone.

In Slovakia, the deposit rates are at 1.93%, in France at 1.63% and in the Netherlands at 1.63%.

The lowest deposit rates are registered in Luxembourg (0.14%), Belgium (0.19%), Latvia (0.32%) and Estonia (0.39%).

In the eurozone, the cost of deposits fell to 1.05% from 1.12%.

Recognizing the problem of high interest rates, the Central Bank is seeking ways to intervene. The CB Governor recently said that a supervisory intervention could be done to cut the deposit interest rates, as it did in 2013.

Within CB, there is the view that intervention should be done directly on lending rates, rather than indirectly with the deposit rates.