December sees mortgage rebound

02 February 2005
The number of new mortgages agreed in December increased on the previous month, according to the latest figures.

News that mortgage lending recovered from its ten-year low in November will be welcomed by lenders.

The Bank of England revealed that 83,000 loans were approved for house purchases, a hefty increase on November's figures of 77,000.

This makes the likelihood of a cut in interest rates this month less probable.

The Bank of England also found that total lending to individuals increased 0.8 per cent in December.

"The modest rise in mortgage approvals and lending in December reinforces the impression that the housing market is currently slowing steadily rather than sharply," said Howard Archer, chief UK economist at Global Insight.

He added: "Nevertheless, mortgage approvals are still very low and point to further house price softness over the next few months at least."

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