Mortgage aprrovals lowest since February

City A.M. Reporter
Mortgage approvals came in slightly better than expected in September, but still fell to the lowest since February, Bank of England figures showed.

The Bank of England said mortgage approvals numbered 47,474 in September, down from 47,498 in August. Analysts had forecast a reading of 46,000, and the equivalent measure from the British Bankers' Association hit an 18-month low earlier in the week.

The figures suggest that both the housing market and broader credit conditions remain tough as the Bank of England considers whether to start a new bout of quantitative easing next week.

Net consumer lending rose by £262m in September after a £21m fall in August. Analysts had forecast that there would be a 0.03 billion pound fall in consumer credit lending.

However, net mortgage lending was much weaker than expected at £112m, well below forecasts for a rise by 1.00 billion pounds and August's level of £1.617bn.

The Bank's preferred gauge of money supply, M4 excluding intermediate other financial corporations grew 2.6 percent on an annualised basis on the quarter between July and September.

On the year, broad money supply growth was one per cent, the lowest since comparable records began in 1983.