Bank lending in China may remain weak during February, the South China Morning Post reported, citing two state banking sources familiar with preliminary data. The country’s big four state banks, which account for 40% to 45% of total lending, offered less than RMB200 billion (US$31.75 billion) as of the end of last week. New lending in February may amount to less than January’s unexpectedly low figure of RMB738.1 billion (US$117.2 billion), said the sources. Local media reported the big four banks granted only RMB70 billion (US$11.1 billion) in new loans between February 1 and February 19, indicating a much slower pace of lending. Bank loans are the most important source of financing in China; the steep decline in bank credit may be driven by the slowdown in fixed-asset investments and a slumping property market.