The latest figures from the Central Bank show that lending to consumers and businesses continued to fall in August, with the rate of decline quickening slightly.

Lending to businesses fell by 2.5% in August compared with the same month last year, compared with a 2.4% annual drop in July.

Lending to consumers fell at an annual rate of 4% in August, slightly bigger than July's 3.9%. Mortgage lending was down 2.4%, while lending for other purposes fell by 9.1%.

Business loans with terms of between one and five years fell during the month, according to the Central Bank, as did short-term loans, but there was an increase in long-term loans to firms.

The Central Bank figures also show that private sector deposits - deposits from households, businesses, financial institutions and pension funds - fell at an annual rate of 10.4% in August, the same as in July. Household deposits were down 5.4% over the 12 months.

Overall deposits dropped by more than €1 billion during August alone, with household deposits down more than €500m.

The amount which has been borrowed by financial institutions from the Central Bank as part of the euro system fell by €2.8 billion in July to €94.8 billion. The domestic banks accounted for €70.5 billion of this.