By Camila Russo, Bloomberg,
Argentines are lining up at banks again. This time, they’re leaving with loans.
Veronica Cajal, who wants to move out of her mother’s house, is among 1.4 million Argentines who applied for subsidized home- construction loans in the first week they were offered as part of a program designed to ease a chronic housing shortage and help revive growth in South America’s second-biggest economy.
The plan calls for the national pension agency to lend about 20 billion pesos ($4.4 billion) for new homes at rates as low as one- tenth the pace of consumer-price increases. The government is trying to foster home building as private banks balk at issuing long-term loans amid inflation that economists estimate at 24 percent a year, a legacy of government policies that followed a $95 billion default in 2001, when Argentines queued at banks to buy dollars before a currency devaluation.
The program calls for making 100,000 loans by the end of 2013. Recipients will be chosen randomly from all eligible applications.Argentina, argentine housing program, Latin America, mortgage loans, subsidized loan program