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MNB instructs banks on retail borrower repayment moratorium

The National Bank of Hungary (MNB) on Wednesday said it is instructing banks to introduce a repayment moratorium for all retail borrowers until the end of 2020 because of the impact of the coronavirus, state news wire MTI reports.

Photo by Adriana Iacob/

If lenders fail to go ahead with the moratorium, MNB said it would ask the government to implement the measure by decree.

The central bank also instructed lenders to reduce annual percentage rates on personal loans to a level no higher than five percentage points over the base rate (0.9%).

Days earlier, MNB instructed banks to introduce a repayment moratorium for all businesses.

MNB said that in the case of clients whose contract conditions depend on monthly transfers of remuneration from employers, banks should not raise interest charges or fees if such transfers do not arrive.

It instructed lenders to contact borrowers with home loans and offer them the chance to convert those loans into ones that are "certified consumer-friendly" by the central bank and have interest rates fixed for a period of at least five years.

MNB said banks should partner with insurers to offer clients low-cost, reduced-commission repayment insurance that offers borrowers "genuine and sufficient" protection.

The rate-setting Monetary Council will soon weigh whether to relaunch a mortgage bond-buying program, MNB said.

A plan to tighten rules on banksʼ mortgage funding adequacy ratios will be postponed, it added.

The central bank said it is recommending the government weigh the possibility of subsidized household loans.

Extending the deadline for prenatal baby support loans is justified, it added.

At present, the baby support credit is available until the end of 2022.

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