Brazilian banks have announced in the past few days a series of measures aimed at mitigating the effects of the crisis generated by the coronavirus pandemic (Covid-19) with individuals and companies.
These decisions are in line with an understanding approved by Febraban (Brazilian Federation of Banks), released last Monday (17). In it, the five largest banking institutions in the country – Bradesco, Banco do Brasil, Itaú Unibanco, Caixa Econômica Federal and Santander – pledged to “meet requests for a 60-day extension of debt maturities”.
This extension in the payment period does not apply to general consumption bills – water, electricity, telephone – and taxes, because they refer to services provided by public service concessionaires and governments. Credit card and overdraft debts are also not covered by the benefit.
The five “banks” are also responsible for the determination released on Thursday (19) by the Central Bank, in which they are required to define opening hours for their bank branches in the midst of the crisis.
Despite the determination, the express guidance is to use digital media to resolve banking issues, with physical agencies being a last resort.
Federal Savings Bank
Caixa Econômica Federal announced a 60-day break in the collection of credit agreements in force for individuals and companies. The measure applies to real estate financing contracts.
Bank of Brazil
Banco do Brasil announced an expansion of R $ 100 billion in its credit lines, in a measure that should benefit 13 million customers.
For individuals, the reinforcement of resources occurs in the personal credit lines (payroll loans, salary credit and automatic credit). For companies, the state bank will increase the resources available for working capital, investment and prepayment of receivables lines by R $ 48 billion.
Santander 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.
To find out if the change has already been made, just use the Santander Way card management application, via cell phone or tablet. Some customers are also informed of the limit increase through SMS.
Regarding the 60-day extension of the credit card installments, the benefit will cover some lines of personal (CP), preventive, direct to consumer (CDC) and real estate credit.
The bank announced that the extension of debts is possible through the signature of Itaú Crédito Sob Measure, which allows the change of the original date. It also makes it possible to renegotiate the maturity of the next installment, choosing to postpone it for 60 days.
Itaú also informs that the 60-day extension is also valid for real estate and vehicle financing. During this period, the same interest rate will be maintained, without charging a fine.
Bradesco did not make any announcements during the week. However, he informs that he is available to extend the debts of current operations for 60 days and the client who is interested in the possibility should contact the branches. There are no further details on possible additional measures.
None of the digital banks made major public announcements in the face of the current crisis. It should be noted, however, that these institutions already have cheaper financial services than those offered by major banking institutions.
Online channels – among social networks and blogs – have been updated by these companies with information, explanations and services that facilitate daily life in quarantine times. They also report on how they are organizing the work of their teams in the midst of the pandemic.
Nubank, which has about 20 million customers, has used its blog to report on online tools available to solve daily activities – like paying bills and making purchases.
"During this period – because of the coronavirus – your cell phone and computer can be good allies when making purchases and carrying out financial transactions without going to the streets," wrote fintech in one of the posts.
C6 described, in text on Medium, the changes already implemented and which are already underway, both for employees and customers. In the coming days, the digital bank should reduce fees for payment of credit card bills and the full refund of points for those who redeemed airline tickets at the travel agency of the Atoms Program, which is issued until March 19.
Another digital bank using a blog to inform customers about its measures in the face of the pandemic is Neon. One of the posts provides explanations about what the coronavirus is and its impacts on the economy.
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