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Banks have to inform clients that gov’t is to thank for fixing Hungarian mortgage rates

picture of Antal Rogán

Banks and financial institutions will be obliged to inform their customers that the government is to thank for fixing Hungarian mortgage rates. It is not enough to simply mention it either: they must also tell their customers precisely how much they are saving because of the measure.

The new regulation came to light in a government decree signed on Monday by Minister of Communication Antal Rogán (pictured). Under the regulation, banks will be subject to the same reporting obligations as energy suppliers, who are required to state on each bill exactly how much a given household has saved because of the government’s utility price cut policy.

The mortgage rate policy was initially announced by Viktor Orbán last month on Facebook. The Prime Minister cited rising interest rates and runaway inflation for the reason why the government needed to fix variable interest rates for mortgages until the end of the first half of 2022.

Variable-rate mortgage loans are around 466,000, or 40% of the total loan portfolio.

444 claims that the recently-published decree, like the utility price cuts, is misleading because the government is making the banking system absorb the missing funds, estimated to be around 30 billion Ft. (US $93.5 million), instead of taking it from the state budget.

Rogán’s decree additionally states that the wording of the bank’s statement to its clients will have to be phrased in a precise way. It even specifies the arrangement of the paragraphs and requires the use of the phrase “interest rate stop” at several points.

[444]

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