UK set for hung parliament

The UK is waking up to a hung parliament this morning for the first time since 1974, with the Conservatives as the largest party.

So far the Tories have won 290 seats but need to reach 326 to win an overall majority.

The mortgage industry is split over what a hung parliament will mean for the mortgage and housing markets.

Mark Blackwell, managing director of xit2, says: “Ten of the 16 countries worldwide that have a triple-A financial rating are run by coalition governments. This proves hung parliaments don’t kill off economies. Culturally we have not been a nation built on coalitions in peace time so the markets may wobble in the short-term.

“But as long as the two parties can put their differences aside, focus on what is best for the electorate and maintain financial stability we shouldn’t see long term detriment to the markets.”

Paul Hunt, managing director of Phoebus Software, says a hung parliament doesn’t have to mean the end of life as we know it.

He says: “Greece has a strong majority government but that hasn’t been able to prevent a financial meltdown. The main parties broadly agree on the need for a tightening of the fiscal belt on a scale that should keep the ratings agencies happy. As long as any tough choices are implemented quickly and decisively we should avoid a downgrade and the market won’t suffer too severely.”