According to Lebanon’s consolidated commercial banks’ balance sheet, total assets decreased by 3.80%, year-to-date (y-t-d), to stand at $208.55B in March 2020.
In details, Resident customers’ deposits (which grasp 56.84% of total liabilities) decreased since the start of the year by 5.20% ($6.49B) to $118.53B in March 2020, with deposits in LBP and in foreign currencies declining by 13.50% and 2.03% to $29.82B and $88.70B, respectively. As for the Non-resident customers’ deposits (14.21% of total liabilities), they retreated by 8.69% ($2.81B) and totaled $29.63B over the same period on the back of a drop in deposits in LBP and in foreign currencies by 15.76% and 73.93% to $2.64B and $16.98B, respectively. As such, the dollarization ratio for private sector deposits increased from 76.02% in December 2019 to 77.94% in March 2020.
On the assets side, Reserves (constituting 56.86% of total assets) recorded a downtick of 0.30% to settle at $118.57B in March 2020. Deposits with the central bank (BDL) (99.31% of total reserves) recorded a monthly downtick of 0.03% to reach $117.75B. Worth mentioning that starting December 2019 (and according to the offsetting criteria in IAS 32 “Financial Instruments: Presentation”), banks have offset their loans taken from BDL in LBP with their corresponding placements at BDL in LBP carrying the same maturities. Meanwhile, on Claims on resident customers (19.04% of total assets) retreated by 9.56%, to stand at $39.71B in Q1 2020. In fact, this drop is mainly due to real estate developers paying back their loans from the sales of properties to people preferring to exchange their frozen deposits to fixed assets, which also explains the decrease in deposits. As for Claims on the government, they declined by 12.65% during the year to stand at $26.38B. In details, the subscription to T-bills in LBP and to Eurobonds recorded a decline by 3.24% and 22.02% to $14.16B and $10.77B, respectively in March. 2020
Commercial Banks Assets and Residents Customer Deposits in Q1 ($B)