Document that provides the essential financial and other information about the borrower on which the lender bases the decision to lend. For a business loan, it normally requires a detailed business plan that includes current and projected (usually for 3 years, or for the period of the loan) income statement (profit and loss account), balance sheet, and cash flow statement. The applicant firm must specify the loan amount and purpose, period and means of repayment, and guaranties and/or collateral offered. For consumer loans, banks generally use standard forms for the applicant to fill-in the information. A loan application entails neither a pledge by the applicant nor a commitment by the lender. Also called credit application.