1.1 BACKGROUND OF THE STUDY
Virtually, every business has a credit relationship with a financial institution, especially banks. Some rely on periodic short term loans to finance temporary working capital needs. Others primarily use long-term loans to finance capital expenditure, new acquisitions or permanent increases in capital. Regardless of the type of loan, all credit request mandate a systematic analysis of the borrower‟s ability to repay as at when due.
Commercial banks carry on ordinary banking business with the general public, changing cash for bank deposits and bank deposits for cash, transferring bank deposit from one corporation to another, giving bank deposit in exchange of bills of exchange, providing of trustees and executor’s services, providing safe custody of funds and valuables as well as foreign exchange remittance. Though commercial banks differs from country to country, their profit and banking motives are the same. Their activities are of interest to their customers, workers (staff), and above all, shareholders.
The commercial objective of the bank is to maximize profit, though other social and economic functions tends to deflect banks from profit maximization. The aims and objectives of commercial banks have therefore paved way for their customers to make and obtain credits, in form of loan of which the researcher is interested in. Lending has become a vital function on operation because of its direct effect and impact on economic growth and business development.
In a market oriented economy, there are two main participants that move the economic growth; these are the suppliers of invisible funds and the users of the funds for productive purposes. These two participants are spread widely in the economy and may not have direct relationship with each other. For this, there is the need to have an intermediary to link them up. The banking sector mobilize surplus funds from small and big savers who have no immediate need for such funds. The users of these funds are the business entrepreneurs and investors who have brilliant ideas on how to create additional wealth in the economy but lack the necessary capital to execute their ideas. These groups of people approach banks to obtain loan.
Subsequently, lending is a risky venture which banks only engage on after a rigorous and satisfactory analysis of the project for which lending is being made. The main preoccupation of banks is extending loans to their customers. Thus, the formulation and implementation of such lending policies are some of the important responsibilities of the management of the bank. The lending policy of a bank must be specific on how much loan will be made available to whom, what period and for what reason. For this reason, lending policies should be well documented so that lending officers will be able to know the areas of prohibition and the area of where they can operate. Also, such policies should be subjected to periodic review to make the banks keep abreast with the dynamic and innovation nature of the economy as well as competing with other changing economic sector.
Therefore, the basic objectives of credit analysis is to assess the risks involved in extending loans to bank customers. In financial circle, risk typically refers to the volatility in earnings. Lenders are particularly concerned with adverse fluctuation in net income or cash flows, which hinder the borrower’s ability to service a loan. Some risks can be measured with historical and projected financial data, while others such as those associated with borrower’s character and willingness to repay a loan are not directly measurable.
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