Slovenian banks' bad loans at 13.2 pct in January - central bank

LJUBLJANA, March 25 Tue Mar 25, 2014 10:34am EDT

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LJUBLJANA, March 25 (Reuters) - The bad loan rate in Slovenia's banking sector edged down to 13.2 percent in January, the Bank of Slovenia said on Tuesday, a day after bank Governor Bostjan Jazbec quoted a higher figure.

Jazbec said on Monday the proportion of bad loans in the country's three largest banks, state-owned Nova Ljubljanska Banka, Nova KBM and Abanka Vipa, was "still big and worrisome" at about 20 percent.

The central bank said that figure represented only bad loans extended to companies, which in January amounted to 20.3 percent of total loans to the corporate sector.

It said January's figures were the most recent available. In December the overall bad loan rate was 13.4 percent.

The three banks are expected to complete the transfer of a large chunk of their bad loans to a state-owned bad bank by the end of April.

Slovenia narrowly avoided an international bailout in December by pumping some 3.3 billion euros ($45.49 billion) in its troubled banks, which accumulated a large stock of bad loans through years of reckless lending.

($1 = 0.7255 Euros) (Reporting By Marja Novak; editing by Zoran Radosavljevic and John Stonestreet)

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