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Saturday 02nd of May 2009
April 27, 2009

New mortgage lending slides 7%


by Gill Montia
New mortgage lending slides 7%

New figures from the British Bankers’ Association (BBA) show mortgage approvals for house purchases falling by 7% in March.

The decline follows three consecutive months in the level had increased.

The Association’s members approved 26,097 new home loans last month, down from 28,024 in February and trailing 25% behind March 2008 numbers.

More positively, last month’s figure is still above the six-month average of 23,152.

The number of remortgages approved by banks also fell in March, to 26,831.

The trend reflects high levels of borrowers moving onto their lenders’ relatively attractive standard variable rates when fixed-rate deals come to an end.

The gross value of all loans approved in March declined to £8.9 billion, down 47% on a year earlier.

The BBA’s director of statistics, David Dooks, comments: “The banks’ figures … show it would be unrealistic to expect the mortgage market to recover in a steady and consistent way in the current economic environment.”

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