Senior Loan Officer Survey - Third Quarter of 2017

Results of the Third-Quarter 2017 Survey | Vol. 10.3 | October 16, 2017

This Senior Loan Officer Survey (SLOS) focuses on changes to business-lending practices in the third quarter of 2017. This survey was conducted between August 8 and September 1, 2017.

  • Survey results point to nearly unchanged overall business-lending conditions in the third quarter (Chart 1)1 in terms of both price and non-price conditions (Chart 2). Note that the pricing of credit is defined as spreads over base rates, rather than as the level of rates.
  • This is the fifth consecutive quarter of unchanged overall conditions. While price conditions tightened somewhat in the second quarter of 2017, non-price conditions have remained little changed since easing in the fourth quarter of 2016.
  • There was some slight easing in non-price conditions for corporate borrowers due to increased competition. However, unchanged lending conditions for all other business borrowers resulted in unchanged conditions overall.
  • Demand for credit in the third quarter was unchanged following an increase in the second quarter of 2017.
  • Access to capital markets was mostly unchanged for all grades of borrowers in the third quarter. This continues the generally increased or unchanged access for most risk grades since the third quarter of 2016, when oil prices stabilized.

Chart 1: Overall business-lending conditions

* The balance of opinion is calculated as the weighted percentage of surveyed financial institutions reporting tightened credit conditions minus the weighted percentage reporting eased credit conditions. Thus, a positive balance of opinion implies a net tightening. The chart shows the average of the balances of opinion for the price and non-price dimensions of lending conditions.

Chart 2: Price and non-price lending conditions

* The balance of opinion is calculated as the weighted percentage of surveyed financial institutions reporting tightened credit conditions minus the weighted percentage reporting eased credit conditions.

Note: Each series is the simple average of the balances of opinion for the small business, commercial and corporate sectors.


  1. 1. Note that the balance of opinion suggests only the direction of the net change in lending conditions relative to the previous quarter; it does not provide information on the magnitude of the change.[]