Banks in the eurozone eased credit standards for loans to businesses in the second quarter for the first time since 2007, the European Central Bank said Wednesday.
Announcing the upbeat results of its quarterly euro area bank lending survey, the ECB said it had also become easier for private households to get loans as confidence returned to the sector.
"Net demand continued to be positive for loans to both enterprises and households and recovered further," it added.
"In addition, euro area banks` access to funding improved in net terms for all main market instruments."
It said that for the first time since the second quarter of 2007, "euro area banks reported a net easing of credit standards on loans to enterprises," compared to a marginal net tightening of credit standards in the previous quarter.
In an effort to boost lending and with it investment and economic growth, the ECB announced a series of measures in early June including long-term loans at low interest rates to encourage banks to lend to households and non-financial corporations.
The survey was conducted between June 26 and July 11 with 137 banks participating.
First Published: Wednesday, July 30, 2014, 16:19