The NBB keeps the CCyB rate at 0%

Pursuant to its macroprudential powers laid down in the Belgian Banking Law of 2014, the NBB decided on 16 March 2021 to maintain the countercyclical buffer rate for credit risk exposures to the Belgian private non-financial sector at 0 % for the second quarter of 2021.

Given the significant challenges the global economy is now facing, the National Bank of Belgium (NBB) had announced, on 11 March 2020, the full release of the countercyclical buffer.

Based on current projections and risk assessments, the NBB expects not to increase the CCyB at least until 2022 Q1. A reactivation of the CCyB in the short run seems hence very unlikely. The NBB usually bases its decisions on the countercyclical capital buffer rate on a series of indicators, including an indicator called the credit gap, which measures the deviation of the credit/GDP ratio from its long-term trend. When GDP falls significantly, as was the case in 2020, this indicator tends to rise mechanically and give a potentially wrong message about the dynamics of the credit cycle. This is why the NBB currently interprets this type of indicator with caution.

The NBB will review the situation on a quarterly basis.