The crisis generated by the coronavirus pandemic and its effects on the economy and on the finances of companies and individuals have led banks to move to avoid further losses. At the same time, the measures serve as relief for customers.
Banco Santander, for example, announced an increase of 10% in the limits of credit cards with payments on time. The institution also decided to anticipate to April the total payment of the 13th salary of its 47 thousand employees.
“In this scenario of uncertainties and concerns, it is essential to ensure the safety of everyone and give more tranquility to the customer in the management of their finances”, says Sérgio Rial, president of Santander Brasil.
According to the executive, the increase in the credit card limit, for example, allows the payment of some expenses to be postponed. This measure can make a difference for those who have already had their budget affected in some way by the pandemic.
What other banks do
Other banks have also made recent decisions aimed at mitigating the impacts of the current crisis. Banco do Brasil made itself available to renegotiate debts, credit operations, to strengthen the working capital of companies and to maintain essential daily services for the population.
"It is not about baseless optimism, but about firm confidence in our country's recovery capacity and in the purpose that drives us, to take care of our client," said the bank's president, Rubem Novaes, in a statement posted on social networks .
Caixa Econômica Federal has also been offering pauses in loan payments and offering credit at reduced rates.
“The crisis will pass. The focus now is to minimize its effects at the moment and in the near future, after the end of the restrictive measures ”, wrote the state bank through a note on social networks.
Longer term for debt and more credit
These measures go in the direction of the commitment assumed by the five largest banking institutions in the country – Bradesco, Itaú, Banco do Brasil, Caixa Econômica Federal and Santander – to mitigate the effects of the coronavirus pandemic on their customers, both individuals and companies.
In a statement released through Febraban (Brazilian Federation of Banks), the institutions said that “they are open and committed to meeting requests for a 60-day extension of debt maturities”.
The National Monetary Council (CMN) also announced two measures in the same direction.
One of them reduces the Principal Capital Conservation Additional (ACPConservação) for one year, from 2.5% to 1.25%. This cut, according to the Central Bank (BC), will increase capital slack in the financial system by R $ 56 billion. It should also increase the total credit granting capacity of the national system to around R $ 637 billion.
CMN also announced the facilitation of renegotiation of credit operations by companies and families recognized as good payers.
Febraban also announced that last Tuesday (17) the Bipartite Covid-19 Commission was created, a direct and permanent channel for exchanging information between banks and the entities that represent sector employees in the face of the current crisis.
Bank measures to protect customers and employees at branches were also confirmed. Institutions can analyze on a case-by-case basis, based on the flow of people and the characteristics of the service station.
Banks are considered essential services for the population. For this reason, bank branches remain open, but following new hygiene and operating protocols with the public.
Febraban, however, advises the population to use remote means of service, such as mobile and internet banking, to minimize the need to attend an agency.
According to the entity, there are 157 banks in operation in Brazil today.
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