A study published ahead of International Women's Day on March 8, 2023, has shown positive growth in the retail loan portfolio of women borrowers in the country, indicating their increasing participation in the credit market.
CRIF High Mark Credit Information Services, an RBI-approved credit bureau, in a study, said the retail loan portfolio of women borrowers rose to Rs 26 lakh crore in December 2022 from Rs 20.7 lakh crore a year ago, up 25 per cent.
The share in overall retail loans by value has also increased from 25.3 per cent to 26 per cent in the same period. For example, of the total outstanding home loan portfolio of Rs 30,52,041 crore in December 2022, the share of women borrowers comprised 32 per cent, an increase of 20 per cent year-over-year (Y-o-Y).
Other major retail loan products availed by female borrowers include gold loans 42 per cent, business loans 40 per cent, education loans 35 per cent, and loans against property (LAP) 29 per cent.
In addition, gold loans, two-wheeler loans, and personal loans saw the maximum Y-o-Y increase in portfolio outstanding of female borrowers at 64 per cent, 42 per cent, and 35 per cent, respectively, as of December 2022.
Likewise, female borrowers' average ticket size (ATS) for all major retail loan products has increased from the calendar year (CY) 2020 to CY2022, except for personal loans and consumer durable loans.
However, the average ticket size of personal loans for female borrowers reduced by 17 per cent between CY2020 and CY2022. In the case of male borrowers, it decreased by 30 per cent in the same period.
The study “International Female’s Day March 2023 Data & Insights” also observed that the average ticket size of the auto, gold, and personal loans was higher for female borrowers than males in CY 2022, while ATS of two-wheeler and consumer durable loans remained the same for both in CY2022.
Maharashtra, Karnataka, Tamil Nadu, Gujarat, and Telangana were the top five states with the most female borrowers for retail loan products.
For instance, women home loan borrowers in Maharashtra accounted for Rs 2,18,162 crore, and business loans Rs 47,225 crore, whereas in Karnataka, home loans comprised Rs 99,679 crore, and business loans accounted for Rs 25,890.
Tamil Nadu topped the list for gold loans at Rs 1,33,987 crore, followed by Andhra Pradesh at Rs 41,298 crore, Kerala at Rs 30,937 crore, and Karnataka at Rs 25,992 crore.
For auto loans, Maharashtra topped the list at Rs 11,701 crore; Tamil Nadu topped the list for education and two-wheeler loans at Rs 7,554 crore and Rs 2,000 crore, respectively. In consumer durable loans, Maharashtra, Tamil Nadu, and Karnataka were the top three states.
The positive growth in the retail loan portfolio of women borrowers over the past two years shows the increasing participation of women in the credit market, a sign of narrowing the financial gap between the genders.