Guaranteed loans exceed the billion mark

TICINO ECONOMY

Many companies have turned to the banks en masse to obtain loans due to the lack of liquidity due to the coronavirus crisis

Guaranteed loans exceed the billion mark
@ Archivio CdT

Guaranteed loans exceed the billion mark

@ Archivio CdT

A time of concern for many companies across Switzerland and many based across Ticino due to the crisis that has taken hold of us all. Businesses have turned for help to the banks en masse to benefit from the loan program guaranteed by the Confederation. Just today the Ticino Banking Association (ABT) has announced that the volume of COVID-19 credits granted in Ticino has reached the threshold of one billion francs.

According to the ABT, the credits up to 500 thousand francs (the total guarantee from the Confederation) have currently granted 8,430 companies a total of 898 million francs, while those higher than 500 thousand francs (guaranteed up to 85% credit from the Confederation, and the rest from the bank) are 42 companies amounting to a total of 92 million. 8,472 businesses have been granted loans of 990 million francs.

Requests still to be approved

ABT underlines that it has exceeded one billion credits as there is further information to be collected from regional data. Furthermore, figures are evolving, as there have been additional requests (within the half a million bracket which are still being analysed). At Swiss level, almost 100 billion Swiss francs have been granted to more than 100,000 companies. This operation will be in place until July 31st.

“The provision of guaranteed loans - explains Franco Citterio, director of the ABT - has exceeded the symbolic figure of a billion francs, which compared to our population and our economy means that many companies are having liquidity problems, often in the past they never felt it necessary or had to ask for bank loans. However, this time the crisis was so sudden that those who have had their sales and orders cancelled have had to face current expenses. This program serves precisely to help companies in this situation. They are loans, they do not solve the problem, but it is hoped that in a few months companies will be able to return to their normal activity”.

“It has also surprised me that the great demand has been at the Swiss level, where the closure of activities was less apparent than in Ticino. If we make a comparison, we are slightly below the Swiss average at around CHF 100,000 per credit. Among other things, the Federal Council has already doubled the amount available, because finances allow it”.

Not all money will be spent

“It is not said - he concludes - that all the credits requested by the companies will be spent, given that a part could remain in bank accounts. However, the crisis could last for months, and we must prepare to face other difficulties”.

We approached Luca Cimasoni, Head of Raiffeisen Switzerland in Ticino to hear his views as Raiffeisen banks in Ticino granted 40% of the total number of loans and 20% of the total amount.

“At national level - explains Cimasoni - we have reached the figure of 20,000 credits granted for a total sum of over 1.6 billion francs, while at the level of Ticino we have reached 3,000 credits with a total sum that has exceeded 210 million of francs. Within the Raiffeisen Group, our region is in first place at national level for the number of credits granted”.

“On the one hand - he continues - The credits granted to our corporate customers are on average less than 100 thousand francs, while from a geographical point of view we have been able to observe that the regions most affected were mainly Lugano and the Mendrisiotto regions “.

SMEs are at the front

“The profile of the Raiffeisen corporate customer reflects very well the overview of the typical small-medium sized Ticino companies, generally that of a family nature”. Says Cimanosi

Banca Cler is also participating in the Confederation’s plan. “In Ticino we have received around 130 requests and have granted credit lines for over 9 million francs”. notes Matteo Bonetti, Head of Banca Cler - Ticino

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