February 12, 2018 / 11:43 PM / a year ago

China banks told to rein in new lending growth: Caixin

FILE PHOTO: A China yuan note is seen in this illustration photo May 31, 2017. REUTERS/Thomas White/Illustration/File Photo

SHANGHAI (Reuters) - China’s banks are under pressure to keep the scale of new yuan lending constant this week as regulators try to curb loan growth ahead of the Lunar New Year holiday, financial magazine Caixin reported late on Monday, citing banking sources.

New loans in China reached a record 2.9 trillion yuan ($458.5 billion) in January, nearly five times higher than the previous month, the central bank said late on Monday.

Although banks usually front-load loans early in the year to win market share and secure higher quality customers, the surge still exceeded expectations, beating a previous record of 2.51 trillion yuan in January 2016.

Reporting by David Stanway; editing by Richard Pullin

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