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FRANKFURT Jan 3 Lending to companies in the euro zone contracted further in November, piling pressure the European Central Bank to do more to revive the economy.
The ECB has cut interest rates to a record low, pumped extra liquidity into the banking system and announced a fresh government bond purchase programme, but the measures have so far not managed to unclog lending to the real economy.
Loans to the private sector shrank by 2.3 percent in November from the same month a year earlier, ECB data released on Friday showed. That compared to a contraction of 2.2 percent in October, year-on-year.
A Reuters poll of economists had pointed to a contraction of 2.1 percent in November.
Euro zone M3 money supply - a more general measure of cash in the economy - grew at an annual pace of 1.5 percent, picking up slightly from 1.4 percent in October and in line with the consensus forecast in a Reuters poll of analysts.
(Reporting by Sakari Suoninen and Eva Taylor; Editing by Jon Boyle)