Gross mortgage lending for March at £20.5bn

 

According to the latest UK Finance Update on Lending report, gross mortgage lending for March 2018 is £20.5bn, a 2.3 per cent decrease on the same time last year.

THE ECONOMY

The Office of National Statistics (ONS) recently reported that the Consumer Price Index (CPI) 12-month rate had dropped to 2.5 per cent in March 2018, which had decreased from 2.7% in February 2018. According to the ONS, the decrease in rate is primarily due to prices for clothing and footwear rising by less than a year ago.

Unemployment sits at 4.2 per cent according to the ONS; there were 32.34 million people in work in March, which is 396,000 more than a year earlier.

UK Finance reported that credit card spending grew at a rate of 5.8 per cent over the year, while repayments outstripped new lending in the first quarter of 2018.

NEW SECRETARY OF STATE FOR HOUSING COMMUNITIES AND LOCAL GOVERNMENT

  • In April, James Brokenshire was appointed as the new Secretary of State for Housing, Communities and Local Government.
  • Following his appointment, Brokenshire tweeted: “Honoured to have been asked by the Prime Minister to serve as Secretary of State at the Ministry of Housing Communities & Local Government. Looking forward to taking the government’s agenda forward especially on building the homes our country needs.”
  • Former Northern Ireland secretary James Brokenshire has been appointed to this role after Sajid Javid was named Home Secretary following Amber Rudd’s resignation.

HOUSING

The UK’s gross mortgage lending is estimated at £20.5bn, 2.3 per cent lower than the same time last year. UK Finance cited a 15 per cent decline in the number of total mortgage approvals, with house purchase approvals falling by almost 21 per cent, compared to a year earlier.

Eric Leenders, Managing Director, Personal Finance at UK Finance commented: “There was a rising trend in mortgage approvals for the first three months of 2018 although the number is slightly lower than the same period in 2017. March figures show that consumer borrowing was fairly modest.”

Henry Knight, Managing Director, Springtide Capital commented: “Despite March’s figures showing a slowdown in mortgage lending, the quarterly figures indicate a more positive trend with some encouraging movement in the market. Ahead of the spring period we expect to see a stable market, although ongoing sentiment may depend on any further interest rate rises.”

Sources:

https://www.ukfinance.org.uk/update-on-lending-march-2018/

https://www.ons.gov.uk/economy/inflationandpriceindices#main