2:32 PM » Fed: Banks eased loan standards in second quarter
WASHINGTON (MarketWatch) -- The nation's banks eased restrictions on business and consumer lending again in the second quarter and saw stronger demand in many loan categories, the Federal Reserve said Monday. According to the most recent survey of senior bank loan officers at American banks and foreign branches in the United States, in the last three months, 13% of those questioned had established easier conditions on business loans to large and medium sized firms and 7% on small firms. For the second straight quarter, banks said they eased lending standards for "prime" or low-risk mortgages. But it is still hard for a borrower with damaged credit history to get a home loan. Standards were also relaxed on auto loans and credit cards. Demand for mortgages, home equity loans, and credit cards increased in the second quarter.