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UPDATE 1-China Sept new loans at 623.2 bln yuan miss forecast
* September new yuan loans total 623.2 billion yuan (f'cast 650 billion yuan
* September total social financing totals 1.65 trillion yuan
* September yuan bond issuance at 227.8 billion yuan (Adds details, analyst quotes)
BEIJING, Oct 12 (Reuters) - Chinese banks made 623.2 billion yuan ($99.28 billion) of new local currency loans in September, data showed Friday, missing market expectations for 650 billion yuan and reinforcing calls for further policy easing to support the slowing economy.
The September new loan data, released by the People's Bank of China in a statement on its website (www.pbc.gov.cn) was down from 703.9 billion yuan in August.
"The fall in new lending shows the central bank might have taken measures to control credit supply given the higher-than-expected reading in August," said Shen Jianguang, Chief economist at Mizuho Securities in Hong Kong.
"Liquidity conditions are still tight in China and I think the central bank should cut RRR as soon as possible."
The PBOC cut interest rates in June and July and has lowered required reserve ratios (RRR) three times since late 2011 to free an estimated 1.2 trillion yuan ($190 billion) for lending.
But it has held off on more aggressive easing measures since then, despite further signs of cooling demand at home and abroad. Instead, it has opted to pump short-term cash into money markets to ease credit strains, a move analysts say reflects Beijing's concerns about renewed property and inflation risks.
Many analysts, however, still believe it could cut the RRR and even benchmark interest rates to support infrastructure investment and bolster economic growth.
The central bank said last month that it will "fine tune" policy to cushion the economy against global risks while closely watching the possible impact from recent policy loosening in the United States and Europe.
Still, some analysts caution against reading too much into the volatile loan data as the People's Bank of China has been encouraging gradual changes in the country's financial systems to wean firms off bank credit in favour of financing through the capital markets.
"The new yuan loan data is slightly lower than market expectations, but we should also pay attention to the total social financing aggregate, which is quite a strong figure and reflects the effect of policy loosening," said Sun Junwei, China economist at HSBC in Beijing.
"We should notice that the proportion of bank lending in the total social financing pool has decreased over recent quarters and we should give more stress to other financing channels, such as corporate bond issuance, when gauging the total liquidity in the economy."
China's total social financing aggregate, a broad measure of liquidity in the economy, stood at 1.65 trillion yuan in September, up from 1.24 trillion yuan in August.
Of the total, companies raised a net 227.8 billion yuan through bond issuance in September, up 175.8 billion yuan from the same month last year, the central bank said.
For the first nine months of 2012, yuan loans accounted for 57.3 percent of total social financing, down 0.6 pecentage points from the same period last year, it added.
($1 = 6.2770 Chinese yuan) (Reporting by Beijing economics team; Editing by Jacqueline Wong and Nick Edwards)
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