US Bank Lending Falls at Fastest Rate in History

Figures spark renewed fears that feds are at a loss
By Mary Papenfuss,  Newser User
Posted Feb 18, 2010 2:36 AM CST
Hundreds of Dollars Money Bills by   (©

(Newser) – The US bank lending rate has fallen its fastest in history, sparking renewed fears that the government hasn't done enough to prop up the economy and that America's troubles are far from over. Lending has plummeted $100 billion just since January, which amounts to a 16% annualized drop. Some $740 billion of bank credit has evaporated since the credit crisis began, a record drop of 10%, reports the Telegraph.

"It is absurdly premature to think of withdrawing stimulus while bank credit is still sliding," said analyst Tim Congdon of International Monetary Research Ltd. "To have allowed this collapse to occur a full 18 months after the financial cataclysm is extreme incompetence. They seem to have forgotten that the lesson of the 1930s was the falling quantity of money."

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