The European Central Bank said on Thursday that it had leant 82.6 billion euros to 255 banks under its new lending programme aimed at boosting the economy via private-sector loans.
"The programme is designed to enhance the functioning of the monetary policy transmission mechanism by supporting bank lending to the real economy," the Frankfurt-based central bank said in a statement.
The amount came in below forecasts by analysts who had pencilled in an uptake of at least 100 billion euros ($129 billion) for the Targeted Long-Term Refinancing Operation (TLTRO).
In June the ECB unveiled plans to pump more liquidity into the financial system later in the year using the TLTRO.
The measures are different from the steps which the ECB took at the end of 2011 and the beginning of 2012 to boost liquidity.
At that time, banks were deemed to be not lending enough to the small- and medium-sized companies that form the backbone of the eurozone economy.
This time, the ECB is instead targeting loans to encourage banks to lend to households and non-financial corporations.
Banks in the single currency area have the possibility this year to borrow from a pot of around 400 billion euros -- up to seven percent of their outstanding loans to businesses and households -- in two rounds of lending.
The second is scheduled for December 11.
The loans under the TLTRO, which runs until September 2018, are advantageous as their financing is calculated on the basis of the ECB's key interest rate which is currently at a new all-time low of of 0.05 percent.
Six further TLTRO rounds will follow between March 2015 and June 2016 but under different conditions.