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Roughly 60 percent of the firms responding to a recent Finance Ministry survey believe that lending by the nation’s top 19 banks became more stringent toward the end of March, the ministry said March 31.

While 50 percent of the firms perceived little change in the lending attitudes of banks toward the close of fiscal 1997, which ended March 31, about 40 percent believe that financial institutions in general are adopting tighter lending policies.

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