ECONOMY

Fitch says new measures may help housing market

Ratings agency Fitch said the Greek government’s measures to boost the construction sector may have a positive impact on the housing market but added that its success will depend on willingness by lenders to increase loan volumes. The Economy and Finance Ministry announced last week it will subsidize mortgages and increase tax benefits for property owners in a bid to boost investments and protect jobs in the construction sector, which accounts for about 7 percent of the economy. «Fitch notes that the effectiveness [of the measures] ultimately lies in the discretion of Greek banks to extend credit amid the current financial conditions, while regulatory supervision is required to oversee prudent new loan underwriting,» the agency said in a statement.