May 25, 2016 / 1:42 PM / 2 years ago

Brazil loan defaults hit record in April as lending shrinks

BRASILIA/SAO PAULO, May 25 (Reuters) - Bank loan defaults in Brazil hit an all-time high in April as the nation’s longest and harshest recession in at least eight decades, coupled with rising borrowing costs, kept straining the ability of consumer and corporate borrowers to stay current on their debts, the central bank said on Wednesday.

Loans in arrears for 90 days or more, a benchmark for defaults, rose to 5.7 percent of outstanding bank loan books last month, the highest level since the central bank began keeping updated records of the indicator five years ago. Loan disbursements fell 0.6 percent in April from March, the report said. (Reporting by Marcela Ayres and Guillermo Parra-Bernal)

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