IDEAS home Printed from
MyIDEAS: Log in (now much improved!) to save this article

Nonperforming Loans in CESEE – What Do They Comprise?

Listed author(s):
Registered author(s):

    This study attempts to shed comparative light on nonperforming loans (NPLs) by analyzing the loan classification systems in ten Central, Eastern and Southeastern European (CESEE) countries, namely Bulgaria, Croatia, the Czech Republic, Hungary, Poland, Romania, Russia, Serbia, Slovakia and Ukraine. Comparing NPL data across countries is often found to be difficult. Three approaches are used to identify a loan as nonperforming. First, the most widely known NPL definition, which is based on the IMF Financial Soundness Indicators (FSIs) Compilation Guide, is simple and clear: “principal or interest 90 days or more overdue.” The IMF strives to present cross-country comparative time series of NPL and other prudential indicators on the FSI website. With respect to nonperforming loans, the FSI website as yet lacks comprehensive data coverage, and comparability is in fact restrained. Therefore, we propose to take stock of national definitions, for which more extensive time series of data are available. Second, national supervisors’ NPL definitions mostly relate to the commonly used credit quality categories proposed by the Institute of International Finance (IIF), whose weakest three categories (“substandard – doubtful – loss”) are typically identified as nonperforming loans. Third, NPL definitions of CESEE and other countries regularly refer to the existence of a “well-defined weakness” of the loan or the borrower in addition to some other factors. Based on these criteria, with priority given to the 90days+ rule, we arrive at an NPL threshold, which includes in some cases NPL bands. We hope this threshold is applicable in such a way that it enables meaningful cross-country comparisons. Finally, the study takes a rough comparative snapshot of the development of NPLs (based on the derived threshold) in the CESEE countries from 2005 to 2010.

    If you experience problems downloading a file, check if you have the proper application to view it first. In case of further problems read the IDEAS help page. Note that these files are not on the IDEAS site. Please be patient as the files may be large.

    File URL:
    Download Restriction: no

    Article provided by Oesterreichische Nationalbank (Austrian Central Bank) in its journal Focus on European Economic Integration.

    Volume (Year): (2011)
    Issue (Month): 4 ()
    Pages: 46-68

    in new window

    Handle: RePEc:onb:oenbfi:y:2011:i:4:b:1
    Contact details of provider: Postal:
    P.O. Box 61, A-1011 Vienna, Austria

    Phone: +43/1/404 20 7405
    Fax: +43/1/404 20 7499
    Web page:

    More information through EDIRC

    Order Information: Postal: Oesterreichische Nationalbank, Documentation Management and Communications Services, Otto-Wagner Platz 3, A-1090 Vienna, Austria

    References listed on IDEAS
    Please report citation or reference errors to , or , if you are the registered author of the cited work, log in to your RePEc Author Service profile, click on "citations" and make appropriate adjustments.:

    in new window

    1. Mwanza Nkusu, 2011. "Nonperforming Loans and Macrofinancial Vulnerabilities in Advanced Economies," IMF Working Papers 11/161, International Monetary Fund.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

    This item is not listed on Wikipedia, on a reading list or among the top items on IDEAS.

    When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:onb:oenbfi:y:2011:i:4:b:1. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Markus Eller)

    If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

    If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.

    If the full references list an item that is present in RePEc, but the system did not link to it, you can help with this form.

    If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

    Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

    This information is provided to you by IDEAS at the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis using RePEc data.