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Bankers' debate: How big is the risk of euro-denominated mortgage loans?

"Nearly 95% of mortgage loans granted by bankers are in foreign currency - usually in euros and Swiss francs - which leaves clients exposed to the foreign exchange risk, which Mişu Negriţoiu, head of ING Bank, called "a time bomb" at the beginning of the week. His position is surprising considering that bankers have sought on numerous occasions to persuade customers that the euro is the only solution for long-term credits, and the NBR has tolerated this approach.

The main argument that persuaded customers to take out foreign-currency loans, especially when it came to large amounts and long maturities, was the interest rate differential.
The high interest rates on RON-denominated loans made mortgage financing in RON almost prohibitive, argue bankers, who have, however, found outlets in euro-denominated loans and even in Swiss francs, at one point. Foreign-currency financing was much easier to obtain from foreign shareholders or from international markets, at very low prices, so even players that had not yet made a name for themselves and that had relatively small networks compared with the old banks, were able to pursue market share on the retail loan segment." source Ziarul Financiar