This article from the public numbers: the new financial Luo Shu (ID: FintechBook), Author: Ray slow, title figure from: Vision China


The growth rate of short-term consumer loans has slowed down.

On November 25, the People’s Bank of China released the “China Financial Stability Report (2019) “, which disclosed data on short-term consumer loans. After experiencing rapid growth in 2017 and deleveraging in 2018, the growth rate as of the end of 2018 has quietly fallen.

From January to October 2017, the year-on-year growth rate of short-term consumer loans increased sharply from 19.9% ​​to 40.9%, and the growth rate of medium- and long-term consumer loans decreased from a maximum of 35% at the beginning of the year to about 23% at the end of the year, and fell to 2018. The average monthly rate is 18%. In the same period, the medium- and long-term consumer loans showed “one rise and one decline”.

According to the “China Financial Stability Report (2019) “, at the end of 2018, the balance of short-term consumer loans was 8.8 trillion, a year-on-year increase of 29.3%. , A decrease of 8.6 percentage points from the same period of 2017.

A risk point for the growth of short-term consumer loans is that it clearly deviates from the growth trend of total retail sales of consumer goods over the same period. This is because consumer loans are an industry linked to real economic benefits and strong individual income, but the increase in short-term consumer loan balances over the past two years has not necessarily played a significant role in the consumer market. The growth rate of short-term consumer loan balances increased from 19.9% ​​at the beginning of 2017 to 40.9% in October.It remained at about 10% and even dropped to 8.5% in 2018.

These data show that the surge in consumer credit is not caused by the increase in consumer spending; consumption is downgrading, but consumer credit is escalating. New Finance Luo Shu once hit the face of “Fundians’ financial reports?” The article analyzed the reasons: either, more from the transformed consumption habits, or credit was diverted for other purposes. This is like the fake boom in the consumer credit market.

When the central bank analyzes the reasons, they believe that the main reasons for the decline in growth rate may be:

“First, from August 2017, for some home buyers to use consumer loan products to circumvent the down payment limit, financial management departments have required commercial banks to strengthen the authenticity verification of personal credit, and severely cracked down on the flow of consumer loan products into the real estate market. Here Under the background, the growth rate of short-term consumer loans has gradually decreased slightly from the highest point of 40.9% in October 2017. Second, the sharp increase in household purchase spending in recent years has squeezed the consumer space to a certain extent, and the total growth rate of retail sales of consumer goods in 2018 It was 9.0%, 1.2 percentage points lower than the previous year. “


A few years later, when the economist wrote the history of consumer credit in China, he would remember the changes in credit data between 2017 and 2018. After five years of rapid growth from 2013 to 2017, short-term consumer loans came to a sudden brake in 2018.

The mitigation phenomenon also appears in Internet finance personal loans.

The China Financial Stability Report (2019) “states that at the end of 2018, the balance of personal loans in the Internet finance industry decreased by 22.7% year-on-year, a growth rate faster than It fell by 63.6 percentage points in 2017. According to central bank statisticsCaliber, the statistical caliber of personal loans in the internet finance industry includes online platform lending, online small loans, internet consumer finance and credit sales. During the period, the number of P2P online loan institutions decreased from 5,000 to 1,490.

Although the central bank did not disclose specific data on personal loan balances in the Internet finance industry, we can see the full picture from the reports of industry research institutions.

The Analysis Report on the Market Outlook and Investment Strategy Planning of the Consumer Finance Industry released by the Foresight Industry Research Institute shows that from 2013 to 2016, the scale of Internet consumer finance increased from 6 billion yuan to 436.7 billion yuan, with an average annual compound The growth rate reached 317.5%. It reached 1.94 trillion yuan in 2018.

Behind the surge in Internet finance personal loans is the result of all Internet companies lending. The New Finance Luoshu sorted out the top 20 Chinese Internet companies and found that they all lend. However, Internet companies ‘”universal” lending and borrowers’ joint debts are serious, exacerbating systemic risks.

In general, the ability to repay is linked to the real economy’s income. If individuals do not make money and still have a good desire for future income, they will excessively leverage consumption. Once the labor market fluctuates, the residential capital chain will be broken on a large scale. Flow, that would mean a big outbreak of default.

The central bank expressed another concern in the China Financial Stability Report (2019): While lenders reduce costs through technologies such as automation and artificial intelligence, the convergence of underlying algorithms and operations may lead to financial markets The sharp fluctuations in prices have caused risks to resonate and aggravate the procyclicality of the financial system.

This convergence of algorithms and operations, along with co-debt, will increase the transmission of risk.


Although the growth rate of short-term consumer loans in the household sector has slowed down year-on-year, it is still in a relatively high growth range.

From January to December 2018, the year-on-year growth rate of short-term consumer loans remained at a relatively high range of 28.1% to 40.1%, which was 1 to 13 percentage points higher than the average growth rate in the past five years, and also higher than the mid-to-long term in the same period. The growth rate of consumer loans was 10-15 percentage points.

On the other hand, At the end of 2018, China’s household sector leverage ratio had reached 60.4%.

According to the 2016 China Family Tracking Survey conducted by Peking University, the debt burden of low-income households is higher than that of high-income households: among debt-bearing households, the average debt-to-income ratio is less than 60,000 yuan per year, and The average debt-to-income ratio with annual income above 360,000 yuan is 89.0%. Low-income households have limited financial assets and rigid consumer spending, which is likely to result in worsening financial conditions due to unexpected expenditure needs.

This has happened in the United States. Since the 1960s, the United States has adopted a radical credit policy to promote economic growth. Subprime loans are a typical example. Banks in the United States are expanding subprime loans. In the economy and society, it is normal for the rich to save and the poor to lend. By increasing consumer credit, taking the savings of the rich, and lending to the poor, the triple effect has finally been achieved: the rich are richer; the poor are poorer, but the level of consumption is still high; and short-term economic growth.

A survey by Peking University shows that 0.8% of indebted households with an annual income of less than 60,000 yuan have a debt of more than 500,000 yuan, which means that under the condition of constant income level, these households need 10 years of full income to pay off debt.

In both the United States and China, the surge in household leverage and the overall contradiction in the credit market are hidden below the average of the large gap between rich and poor. The actual situation is often more serious than the apparent data.

In fact, the increase in leverage is not a sign of economic prosperity, nor does it mean economic growth. An article in the “Comparison” magazine from 1870 to 2013 showed that, for every 1% increase in leverage, the real GDP growth rate decreased by 0.01% to 0.02%.

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