LONDON, April 30 (Reuters) - British mortgage approvals for
house purchase bounced back more strongly than expected in
March, in a further sign homebuyers are benefiting from the
central bank's flagship credit scheme.
Lending to businesses fell last month, but at a slower pace
than in February, Bank of England data showed on Tuesday.
NUMBER OF MORTGAGE APPROVALS
MARCH FEB FORECAST
53,504 51,947 (51,653) 52,500
LENDING TO INDIVIDUALS (NET CHANGE IN BLN STG):
MARCH FEB FORECAST
Total lending 0.9 1.3 (1.5) n/f
Secured on dwellings 0.4 0.8 (0.9) 0.6
Consumer credit 0.5 0.5 (0.6) 0.5
LENDING TO NON-FINANCIAL BUSINESSES (NET CHANGE IN BLN STG)
Total lending -0.6 -2.0 (-2.2)
- of which SMEs -0.1 0.1 (0.1)
PHILIP SHAW, INVESTEC
'The encouraging pointer is the rebound in mortgage
approvals for house purchases. What isn't clear is whether
approvals were depressed once again by cold weather conditions.
In that sense it's entirely possible we see a more marked
increase next month, but that's open to question.'
ROSS WALKER, RBS
'Overall it's a tad firmer. I don't think these are by any
means a game changing set of numbers. After a surprisingly weak
outturn last month we have seen a bit of a normalisation.
'To the extent that the market has been backing away from
more QE in May, these figures go with the grain of that but the
underlying trends are still pretty weak.'
'There's been a very slight underlying improvement since
last summer in approvals. Maybe in part you could cite the FLS.
'But it's still that step-change lower that we saw in 2008.
In terms of the big picture we've been going sideways since
2009. The bigger effect (from the FLS) is on the price of
(Reporting by UK economics team)
Keywords: BRITAIN LENDING/BOE
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