While the Banco de la República lowered the rate of its main instrument of intervention in the market by 200 basis points (two percentage points), with the intention of stimulating the economy and influencing a generalized drop in interest on credit, those of credit cards have only dropped a little more than 100 basis points (1%).
(Read: Basic rules for using credit cards)
According to information from the Financial Superintendency, at the end of last March the average interest rate of credit cards for individuals was 23.90% annual cash, compared to the average of 25.07% annual cash in March 2020, that is, the decrease reaches 117 basis points.
On the other hand, in consumer loans the average interest rate at the end of last March was 13.49% annual effective compared to the average rate of March 2020, which was 15.74% annual effective, which which means that the decrease in this average rate is 225 basis points (2.25 percentage points), higher than the decrease in the Issuer’s rates.
According to the Superfinanciera, for the entire financial system the average interest rate of consumer loans as of last March was 13.66% annual effective, against the 15.84% annual effective March 2020, that is, the The decrease was 218 basis points (2.18 percentage points) and in the credit card as of last March the average rate was 24.10% compared to a March 2020 rate of 25.36% effective, with a decrease of 126 basis points (1.26 percentage points) slightly higher than the decrease seen in bank rates in that segment, but also below the decline of the Issuer.
It must be remembered that credit card rates move in a lower range, but very close to the usury rate, which in the case of March was 26.12%.
For Édgar Jiménez, from the Financial Laboratory of the Jorge Tadeo Lozano University, the interest rate on consumer loans dropped 225 basis points and discounted a figure higher than that of the Banco de la República in its monetary policy rate.
And in that sense, he says, “one would have expected that the interest rate on credit cards would have been above 22%. It has not discounted, it is the line that has decreased to a lesser extent as would be expected ”.
The analyst considers that the reason for this could be due to the supply and demand mechanism.
“If there is consumption, the entities would not be forced to lower the rate because it is seen that there is a sustained demand for this credit product,” he assures.
On the other hand, according to the Superfinanciera, throughout the isolation period, that is, from March 20, 2020 to April 2, 2021, companies and households have financed their economic and personal activities through 294,417,312 disbursed credit operations, for a total value of $ 367.9 billion.
In relation to the Debtor Support Program, PAD, from August 1, 2020 to April 7, 2.1 million debtors redefined the conditions of their credits for a value of $ 37.5 billion, and $ 15 had been disbursed, 4 billion credits guaranteed by the National Guarantee Fund.