Mexico's Banorte seeks $1.49 bln in new mortgage loans in 2013

MEXICO CITY Mon Feb 11, 2013 7:53pm EST

MEXICO CITY Feb 11 (Reuters) - Grupo Financiero Banorte plans to make 19 billion pesos ($1.49 billion) in new, individual mortgage loans this year, Mexico's fourth largest bank said on Monday.

The loans, combined with 11 billion Mexican pesos in planned construction loans, will put the bank's total credit investment towards housing development at 30 billion pesos in 2013, it said.

"For this year, our goal is to achieve 30 billion pesos in loans for housing development in our country," Isidoro Sanchez, Banorte's corporate mortgage director, said in a press release.

Lending in Mexico has lagged behind other Latin American countries, with outstanding commercial bank loans equal to less than 19 percent of gross domestic product in 2011, according to the IMF.

Banorte reported a 20 percent rise in fourth quarter profit last month, its 11th straight quarter of growth.

Also last month, the bank and Mexico's social security institute (IMSS) closed a deal to buy Spanish bank BBVA's Mexican pension fund for $1.735 billion, creating Mexico's largest pension fund with 522 billion pesos ($41.5 billion) under management.