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Mortgage approvals drop 18%

New mortgage approvals for house purchase dropped 18% in March compared with February, according to the British Bankers Association.

The BBA said that there were just 35,417 new mortgages approved n March, representing a 46% fall compared to March last year and the lowest monthly figure since September 1997.

All forms of lending, not just mortgages, were being restricted by the lack of funds. David Dooks, statistics director for the BBA, said: The consequences of low banking sector liquidity show up clearly in March data. Reduced product ranges and tighter criteria resulted in slower mortgage lending and significantly fewer loan approvals.

Pressures on personal finances are also constraining demand, not only for mortgages, but also for personal loans and borrowing on cards.


Cattles rustles up rights issue

Sub-prime lender Cattles has launched a 200m rights issue to be underwritten by Citigroup and HSBC. The lender says that although it has received strong support it will use the rights issue to diversify its funding and finance its long-term growth.

Sir Derek Higgs, chairman of A&L, dies

Alliance & Leicester chairman Sir Derek Higgs, 64, was taken ill on Monday 28 April and died in a London hospital during the afternoon.

Remortgaging tops broker business

Research carried out for Mortgage Strategy reveals the importance of remortgaging to brokers.In a poll conducted by Alliance & Leicester in February, 105 brokers were quizzed on how their completed mortgage cases break down.On average, brokers say remortgages make up 58% of their business, with buy-to-let and first-time buyer mortgages lagging at 20% and 18% […]


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