European Central Bank's Frankfurt headquarters (Stephan Rückert)European Central Bank's Frankfurt headquarters (Stephan Rückert)

Frankfurt, Germany — Households and non-financial corporations in the euro area saw financial investment and financing increase at stable rates in the fourth quarter of 2023, the European Central Bank (ECB) said Tuesday.

Non-financial corporations’ gross operating surplus rose by 1.7%, following a 3.6% increase in the previous quarter. The euro area reported a current account surplus of €240 billion in 2023, with notable surpluses vis-à-vis the UK and Switzerland, and deficits vis-à-vis China and EU Member States. The euro area bank lending survey indicated stable credit standards, decreased loan demand from firms, and ongoing tightening pressures due to central bank balance sheet reduction, the ECB added.

Euro area firms reported moderate tightening of financing conditions in the first quarter of 2024, with expectations of increased selling prices and wages. Euro area bank interest rate statistics for February 2024 showed decreases in borrowing costs for corporations and households.

By Silvia Orfeo

Silvia Orfeo is a Sr. Politics and Economics Reporter at Nobot.News

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