One Of The Most Reliable Indicators Of Job Creation Continues To Send Bullish Signals

American flag horseREUTERS/Octavian CantilliSheila Shirah, 17, the 2011 Miss Silver Spurs, rides around the arena during a prayer at the start of the Silver Spurs Monster Bull rodeo event held at Osceola Heritage Park in Kissimmee, February 11, 2012.

The Federal Reserve just released its July
Senior Loan Officer Opinion Survey.

For the most part, banks are either staying just as easy with their lending standards as they have been or they’re becoming more easy.

“Easier lending standards are usually associated with later employment growth,” says UBS economist Maury Harris.

From the report:

…In the July survey, domestic banks, on balance, reported having eased their lending standards and having experienced stronger demand in most loan categories over the past three months. This summary is based on the responses from 73 domestic banks and 22 U.S. branches and agencies of foreign banks.

Regarding loans to businesses, the July survey generally indicated that banks eased their lending policies for commercial and industrial (C&I) and CRE loans and experienced stronger demand for such loans over the past three months. In particular, a moderate fraction of domestic respondents reported having eased their standards on C&I loans, and moderate to large net fractions of such respondents reportedly eased many terms on C&I loans to firms of all sizes.3 Most banks that eased their C&I lending policies cited increased competition for such loans as an important reason for having done so. On net, respondents reported stronger demand for C&I loans over the second quarter, although a few large banks indicated that demand had weakened.4 A modest net fraction of foreign respondents indicated that they had eased standards on, and a moderate net fraction had experienced stronger demand for, C&I loans in the second quarter.

The survey results also indicated that banks eased standards and terms on, and saw increases in demand for, some categories of lending to households. Modest net fractions of respondents reported having eased standards on prime residential or nontraditional mortgage loans, and a large net fraction indicated that they had seen increased demand for prime mortgage loans. A moderate net fraction of respondents reported that they had eased standards on auto loans over the past three months, and small net fractions indicated that they had eased standards on credit card loans and other consumer loans. Demand for all three types of consumer loans asked about in the survey had reportedly strengthened, on balance, over the second quarter…

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