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关于印尼在线借贷,他们自己人怎么看?

全新的互联网金融模式国际资讯

关于印尼在线借贷,他们自己人怎么看?

总体而言,2017年包括印尼在内的东南亚大部分地区的金融科技和在线贷款都发展良好。

根据CB Insights的数据,2014年印尼只有三笔金融科技交易。2015年这一数字上升到11笔,2016年增至21笔。预计2017年将增至53笔。

2017年,印尼的金融技术交易金额已经达到约30亿美元。尽管这一数字与中国、西方的金融科技交易额相比,还有点相形见绌,但对于印尼金融科技未来,这种驱动力是个好兆头。

那么到底印尼自己人是如何看待本国新兴的金融科技产业呢?今天我们就邀请印尼金融科技产业从业者Aidil Zulkifli跟我们聊聊这个话题。

繁荣与萧条

2015年4月,我在印度尼西亚开创了一家先锋金融科技借贷公司UangTeman,我见证了这个新兴产业的诞生与发展。尽管我为印尼金融技术贷款的快速增长感到兴奋,但我也担心它的未来。

如果历史是一名好老师,它就会告诉我们,印尼正在走上与美国、英国、中国相同的道路。问题在于,每个人都为这个行业的繁荣而得意到忘乎所以,却忘记了它即将破产的未来。

我的看法是不良贷款增加、行业最终整合,萧条阶段将比预期来得更早。外国和本国投资者可能不熟悉印尼金融科技贷款的特别风险,这些低成本资本流入也可能会加剧这种情况。

印尼已经出现了第一批金融科技贷款领导者。美国有LendingClub、OnDeck和Prosper这样的在线贷款公司,印尼正从这种与美国类似的不可持续发展趋势中获益。这些趋势包括:

  1. 亚洲整体的低收益环境
  2. 信贷环境强健,违约率历年都很低,但过去的一年里,印尼的这种情况发生了变化。
  3. 主流金融机构仍然不看好向消费者发放新的无担保贷款

家庭债务宏观经济学也提出了一个令人担忧的趋势。

廉价资金与傻瓜资金

过去6个月间,中国投资者对投资印尼的金融科技贷款兴趣浓厚。中国对金融技术贷款严格限制,这是投资者在其他地方寻找收益需求的直接结果。

过去5年,中国人民银行的利率从6%降至2.75%。同样,日本的利率仅为0.1%(日本政府债券收益率仅为0%左右),日本投资者也在日本以外的地区寻找更高的收益。

而印尼经济表现强劲 (国内生产总值的增长率约为5%),加上印尼有大量人口没有银行服务或银行服务不足,在这样的背景下,外国投资涌入印尼,尤其是金融科技领域不足为奇。然而,随着廉价资本涌入市场,在线银行面临着巨大的压力,被要求发展得更快、更激进。普通的网上银行也将获得资金。

然而当监管者和投资者闻着玫瑰花香从梦中醒来的时候,他们只会闻到玫瑰下肥料的味道。

换句话说,部署廉价资本以求收益回报必然意味着在线贷款机构会放宽承销标准,无还款能力的借款人也会得到贷款。这种情况正在美国发生,机构资金追逐P2P贷款,把它作为一种新的资产类别,这导致了贷款承销只是为了满足这种强烈需求。

廉价(且大多是愚蠢的)资本现象自然而合乎逻辑的结果就是印尼将看到替代在线贷款机构向消费者发放的不良贷款激增。当监管者和投资者闻着玫瑰花香从梦中醒来的时候,他们只会闻到玫瑰下肥料的味道。

在这种廉价资金、傻瓜资金的背景下,印尼银行业的不良贷款已经增加。Indonesia Investments上的一篇文章称,经济学家预测2017年印尼的不良贷款率约为3%至3.5%,较2015年的2.4%大幅上升。这篇文章补充道:

印尼经济快速增长、加上印尼央行的低利率环境导致个人和企业的信贷需求不断上升。

随着印尼主流金融机构收紧信贷承销,在线银行见证了一个有趣的现象,容易贷款(但不是最佳)的消费者从网上银行借款。换句话说,网上银行正在选择潜在的坏账借款人。

印尼一直是一个家庭债务与国内生产总值比例很低的国家。截至2016年,印尼家庭债务仅占国内生产总值的10%,而美国的家庭负债比率约为80%。然而,更进一步的观察表明,随着美国家庭债务比率下降,印尼的家庭负债比率实际上有所上升。

结论

虽然有充分的理由看好印尼的金融科技领域(我相信,大多数外国投资者还是对印尼充满投资热情),但我们还没有看到消费信贷的全面繁荣-萧条周期。

我的论点是,对于印尼的网上银行来说,破产周期将特别痛苦,只有强者才能生存。从历史上看,银行一直都在经历这样的周期,并接受监管,找到抵御的方法。在线替代贷款机构却并非如此,除非此类贷款平台的创始人在一开始就已经专注于建立弹性机制(而不是为了赚快钱而只关注公司增长)。

在线银行、投资者和监管机构都在印尼的金融科技浪潮中开香槟庆祝,当派对结束后,最能忍受宿醉的是那些知道何时停止喝酒的人。

Generally, 2017 has been a good year for fintech and online lending in Indonesia and most of Southeast Asia.

According to CB Insights, there were only three fintech deals in 2014 in Indonesia. The number rose to 11 in 2015 and increased to 21 in 2016. It is expected to rise to 53 in 2017.

The value of fintech deals reached about US$3 billion in 2017 in Indonesia alone. While this pales in comparison to fintech deals in China and the West, such traction bodes well for the future of fintech in Indonesia.

Boom and bust

Heading a pioneering fintech lending company in Indonesia (my company, UangTeman, started in April 2015), I‘ve seen the development of the nascent industry since its birth. As much as I am excited about the fast growth of fintech lending in the country, I worry about its future too.

If history is a good teacher, it teaches that the space is embarking on the same trajectory as that of the US, the UK, and China. The problem is that everyone is giddy with the industry’s boom but forgets about its bust phase.

My thesis is that this phase will come faster than expected, resulting from higher non-performing loans (NPLs) and eventual consolidation of the industry. The situation will be exacerbated by the influx of low–cost capital from foreign (and local) investors who may not be acquainted with the unique risks of fintech lending in Indonesia.

The country has seen its first wave of fintech lenders. It has benefited from exactly the same kind of unsustainable trends that the US (with online lenders like LendingClub, OnDeck, and Prosper) have seen. These trends include:

  1. A low–yield environment within Asia in general
  2. A robust credit environment with historically low defaults (but this has been changing in the past year in Indonesia)
  3. Mainstream financial institutions, which are still bearish about making new unsecured loans to consumers

The macroeconomics of household debt poses a worrisome trend too.

Cheap and dumb money

There has been a radical uptick in the past six months from Chinese investors interested in investing in fintech lending in Indonesia. This is a direct result of the clampdown on fintech lending in China and the need to search for yield elsewhere.

The interest rates at the People’s Bank of China have dropped from 6 percent to as low as 2.75 percent over the past five years. Likewise, Japanese investors are searching for higher yield outside of Japan where interest rate is a mere 0.1 percent (Japanese government bonds yield only around 0 percent).

With this background, the strong economic performance of Indonesia (GDP growth at approximately 5 percent), and a large unbanked and underbanked population, it is no surprise that foreign investments are flooding into Indonesia, especially in the fintech space. However, with access to cheap capital flooding the market, there is immense pressure on online lenders to grow faster and more aggressively. Mediocre online lenders will also receive funding.

In other words, the need to deploy cheap capital to start yielding returns would invariably mean that underwriting standards by online lenders would be relaxed, and unworthy borrowers are provided loans. This happened in the US when institutional money was chasing P2P loans as a new asset class, which resulted in loans being underwritten just to satisfy that hunger.

The natural and logical conclusion to the phenomena of cheap (and mostly dumb) money is that Indonesia will start seeing a proliferation of bad loans made to consumers through alternative online lenders. When both regulators and investors wake up from their dream to smell the roses, they will only smell the manure fertilizing the roses.

Against this background of cheap and dumb money, Indonesia has seen a rise in NPL in its banking sector. Economists are predicting that 2017 will see an NPL ratio of about 3 percent to 3.5 percent, a sharp rise from 2.4 percent in 2015, says an article on Indonesia Investments. It adds:

Indonesia’s accelerating economic growth, as well as Bank Indonesia’s lower interest rate environment, has resulted in rising credit demand from individuals and corporations.

With the Indonesian mainstream financial institutions tightening their credit underwriting, online lenders have seen an interesting phenomenon, where easily banked (but not prime) consumers are borrowing from online lenders. In other words, online lenders are picking up potentially bad borrowers.

Indonesia has always been a country where the household–debt ratio to its GDP has been admirably low. As of 2016, it was still only 10 percent of its GDP, while the US household-debt ratio is about 80 percent. However, a deeper look shows that the Indonesian household–debt ratio actually increases as the US household–debt ratio decreases.

Conclusion

While there are certainly good reasons to be bullish about the Indonesian fintech space (which I am sure litter most investment thesis decks of foreign investors keen on Indonesia), we have not seen the full boom–bust cycle of consumer credit yet.

My thesis is that the bust cycle would be particularly painful for online lenders in Indonesia, where only the strong will survive. Banks have historically seen such cycles and are regulated and built in a way to withstand them. Alternative online lenders are not, unless founders of such lending platforms focus on building resilience at the outset (and not entirely focused on growth for the sake of a quick buck).

As online lenders, investors, and regulators pop champagne bottles while riding this fintech wave in Indonesia, when the party is over, those with the most bearable hangover are those who know when to stop drinking.


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