Thursday 30 June 2016 9:22 am

Singapore bank UOB suspends London property loans following Brexit vote

Singaporean bank UOB has become the city state's first lender to suspend loans for London properties citing uncertainty caused by the result of last week's EU referendum.

"We will temporarily stop receiving foreign property loan applications for London properties," a UOB spokeswoman said in an email.

"As the aftermath of the UK referendum is still unfolding and given the uncertainties, we need to ensure our customers are cautious with their London property investments."

UOB is Singapore's third biggest lender – the country's biggest lender, DBS Group Holdings, said it would continue to provide financing for property purchases in London but was advising customers to be cautious.

""For customers interested in buying properties in London, we would advise them to assess the situation carefully before committing to their purchases as there could be potential foreign exchange and sovereign risks," said DBS Bank's Tok Geok Peng.

Following the UK's vote in favour of Brexit, the Singaporean dollar has gained 10 per cent against the struggling pound, whittling down the value of assets held in Britain. 

In addition to uncertainties surrounding Brexit, Singapore is facing economic woes more broadly in Asia – and as a result ratings agency Moody's changed its outlook on the country's banking system to negative.

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