The Federal Reserve said the share of banks making it tougher for companies and consumers to borrow approached a record after the subprime-mortgage...

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The Federal Reserve said the share of banks making it tougher for companies and consumers to borrow approached a record after the subprime-mortgage collapse made them more reluctant to lend.

The quarterly Senior Loan Officers’ Survey, published Monday in Washington, D.C., underscores the Fed’s concern that $318 billion of credit losses and write-downs among financial firms is causing a credit crunch.

The survey, conducted last month, also indicates that the Fed’s interest-rate cuts and loans to banks have failed so far to defuse the threat to the six-year economic expansion.

“This survey reflects the high level of angst among banks involving the erosion of credit quality, rising delinquencies, foreclosures and defaults,” said Mark Zandi, chief economist at Moody’s Economy.com.

The report covered 56 domestic banks and 21 foreign institutions.

“I think we’re back to 1980s lending” in terms of acceptable credit records and down payments, David Kittle, the chairman-elect of the Mortgage Bankers Association, said Monday.

Information from The Associated Press is included in this report.