One in four take non-bank loan

The Bank of Israel regulations forbidding overdraft transgressions has contributed to the growth of non-bank loans.

One in four bank customers chose to take non-banking loans in recent months, a survey by the SmartMoney financial website said on Sunday, following the implementation of the overdraft law. "We can see this uncompromising war today being played out in all of the media outlets [in ad campaigns], seen through attractive low interest rates, fast loan approvals, and comfortable repayment conditions," SmartMoney said. The survey, which questioned 3,800 readers of the Web site, showed that consumers who require cash for a variety of reasons find it easier to receive loans outside of their banks, SmartMoney said, adding that non-bank credit companies provide customers with tempting loans, and an ability to repay them in an "almost completely independent manner." The Bank of Israel regulations forbidding overdraft transgressions, which recently came into effect last July, have only contributed to the growth of non-bank loans, SmartMoney said in its analysis of the survey. It added that the change in lending trends led most local banks to make a greater effort to provide loans to customers. First Direct Bank came in first in the tally of banks whose customers turned to non-bank loans, with 33% of its customers saying they took non-bank loans. Bank Otzar Hahayal came in second (30.46%), while First International Bank was third (27%). Some 22% of customers who banked with Bank Leumi and Bank Hapoalim took non-bank loans, the survey found.