Consumer loans in Saudi Arabia nudged up by three per cent at the end of the second quarter of the current year, totalling SAR323.3 billion, compared with SAR314.1bn in the same period last year.
Personal loans comprised 25 per cent of the total value of Saudi banks’ loan portfolio, which stood at SAR1.32trn by the end of the second quarter, according to data published by Al Eqtisadiah.
Personal loans doubled sevenfold since 1998, when they stood at SAR47.1bn, the data shows.
Consumer loans in Saudi Arabia are extended for the following purposes: renovation of homes, buying cars or other means of personal transportation, buying furniture, education, healthcare and tourism and travel, among others.
Consumer loans provided to finance the purchase of cars increased by nine per cent in the second quarter to SAR28bn or eight per cent of the total value of consumer loans.
Loans extended through credit cards accounted for three per cent or SAR9.6bn of the total value of consumer loans, while the value of loans extended to finance the purchase of furniture amounted to SAR5.3bn.
The combined value of loans extended to fund education, healthcare and travel and tourism comprised a meagre 0.3 per cent or SAR872 million of the total value of consumer loans.
(SAR1 = AED0.9, at the time of publishing)