mortgage lending

Claire Jones

It’s all looking a little brighter for UK households in need of some credit.

Data out from the Bank of England today showed the average mortgage rate dipped slightly, from 3.84 per cent in August to 3.77 per cent in September. Mortgage approvals edged up, to 94,385 from 90,023 in August. The picture was also a little cheerier for unsecured lending to households.

All of which will delight the Bank of England, keen as it is for any sign that Funding for Lending – its latest flagship scheme to spur lending to businesses and households – is working. However, the Bank should be wary about reading too much into today’s data.

A couple of reasons why. Read more

House purchase borrowing rose significantly last month in France and Italy, while continuing to fall in many of their eurozone peers. Annual growth in house purchase lending rose by 50bp to 6.3 per cent in France, and 30bp to 8.6 per cent in Italy.

Lending is still contracting in Ireland, for example, and growing at a falling rate in Portugal, Spain and Greece. Even in Germany, where many economic indicators look strong, growth in house purchase lending is static, and at just 0.5 per cent annually. Read more