The CBR has published banking sector data for November that came in line with earlier highlighted preliminary statistics. Lending growth decelerated: the corporate loan book grew only 0.3% MoM (vs. 1.7% in October); the retail portfolio expanded 2.4% MoM (vs. 2.9%). In YoY terms, growth was down to 13.5% and 41.8%, respectively (vs. 17.1% and 42.7%). Eliminating the 1.6% RUB appreciation, the corporate loan book grew 0.5% MoM and 13.9% YoY. Retail deposits increased 1.8% MoM, rebounding from the 1.1% increase in October. However, corporate accounts declined 0.7% MoM. LDR stayed at 90%.
The seasonal trend might keep loan growth strong in December; however, we expect that deterioration in the macroeconomic backdrop, capital restraints at banks and high lending rates will support further deceleration of YoY loan book expansion in 2013. Meanwhile, in the coming year, our key focus in the sector will be on banks’ NIM (with pressure from cost of funding likely to stay high in 1H13) and our expectations for CoR to grow amid weakening asset quality.