The Philippine financial system has reached a new milestone, with total assets of banks and non-bank institutions surpassing P30 trillion for the first time as of November 2022, according to data from the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP).
Driven by steady growth across the banking sector, aggregate assets rose 8.68% year-on-year to P30.276 trillion. This continues the upward trajectory in bank assets, which have grown consistently over the past few years.
Universal and commercial banks, which account for the lion’s share of the banking system’s resources, saw assets increase 9% to P23.564 trillion. Big banks alone made up 93.8% of the total P25.125 trillion assets of the entire banking industry.
Thrift banks and rural/cooperative banks also registered asset growth, though at a more modest pace of 7.5% and 4% respectively.
Meanwhile, non-bank financial institutions, including investment houses, financing companies, pawnshops and credit card firms, grew their assets by 4.5% to P5.151 trillion.
The breaching of the P30 trillion level signals the continued expansion and depth of the Philippine financial system. It provides more capital for supporting economic growth and meeting the financing needs of businesses and consumers.
Analysts say the growth in bank assets reflects the overall economic expansion and opportunities in the country, despite global headwinds. However, they caution that banks need to balance pursuing asset growth while ensuring asset quality.
With the 2023 national elections also on the horizon, experts say policies promoting a healthy investment environment will be crucial in ensuring the banking system’s assets are sustainably grown and properly managed for the long-term.