Rome, August 8 - The fall in the number of loans granted by banks accelerated in recession-hit Italy in June, the Bank of Italy said Thursday. The central bank said loans to Italian households and non-financial firms was down 3% in June compared to the same month in 2012. The year-on-year decrease in May was 2.4%. The Bank of Italy said loans to households were down 1% in June with respect to the same month in 2012, the same as in May. But loans to non-financial businesses were 4.1% lower than in June 2012, compared to -3.6% for the year-on-year figure in May. This acceleration is a worrying sign as attempts to pull the Italian economy out of its longest recession in 20 years may be hampered if families and businesses have trouble obtaining credit.
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di Giovanni Pastore