TOKYO – The Bank of Japan (BOJ) on Wednesday offered 8.28 trillion yen (US$77.74 billion) in loans to financial institutions under a new lending programme aimed at channeling funds to cash-strapped firms hit by the COVID-19 pandemic.
The three-month loans will be extended on June 25 through December 25, BOJ said.
The market operation on June 24 was the first to be offered since the Bank of Japan combined several facilities in May to create a single lending programme aimed at pumping money to pandemic-hit firms via financial institutions.
The central bank has said it expects the amount of money to be pumped out via the programme to eventually reach 110 trillion yen.
The BOJ eased monetary policy in March and April, pledging to buy more assets, gobble up unlimited amounts of government debt and create lending facilities to channel money to firms.
The number of participants surged to 180 from just 18 in March, after the Bank of Japan decided to pay a 0.1% interest to financial institutions that tapped the programme — effectively subsidising them for taking up loans from the central bank.