UK Mortgage Approvals Rise For First Time in 5 Months

The recent slowdown in the UK housing market might prove to be short-lived, after figures showed the number of mortgages approved rose for the first time in five months in June.

Approvals increased more than expected to 67,196, up from 62,007 in May, according to the Bank of England data. The City had forecast a smaller increase to 62,600.

Economists said the figures suggested lenders were getting to grips with the new rules that came into effect under the mortgage market review (MMR) in April. The tougher rules require lenders to take additional steps to ensure people will be able to afford their mortgage repayments.

Matthew Pointon, property economist at Capital Economics, said the latest figures would probably mark the beginning of a steady rise in mortgage lending.

“The disruption caused by the MMR appears to be passing, with the Bank of England reporting a healthy rise in mortgage approvals in June. A strong economic recovery will ensure that lending grows steadily over the coming months.

“On balance, mortgage lending is likely to rise at a slow but steady pace over the rest of the year. In turn, that is consistent with further gains in house prices, although at a slower pace than that seen over the past 12 months.”

Lending to businesses, however, fell by £3.4bn in June, following a £2.3bn rise in May according to the Bank’s data.

via The Guardian

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Alfonso Esparza

Alfonso Esparza

Senior Currency Analyst at Market Pulse
Alfonso Esparza specializes in macro forex strategies for North American and major currency pairs. Upon joining OANDA in 2007, Alfonso Esparza established the MarketPulseFX blog and he has since written extensively about central banks and global economic and political trends. Alfonso has also worked as a professional currency trader focused on North America and emerging markets. He has been published by The MarketWatch, Reuters, the Wall Street Journal and The Globe and Mail, and he also appears regularly as a guest commentator on networks including Bloomberg and BNN. He holds a finance degree from the Monterrey Institute of Technology and Higher Education (ITESM) and an MBA with a specialization on financial engineering and marketing from the University of Toronto.
Alfonso Esparza