Santander reports 12% drop in mortgage lending

Santander has reported a 12.2 per cent year-on-year fall in mortgage lending in the first quarter.

Announcing its Q1 results today, the bank said it had lent £5bn to mortgage borrowers in the first three months of the year, compared to £5.7bn over the same period last year.

Its book shrunk slightly from £150.1bn at the end of December to £149.7bn at the end of March, which the lender says was as a result of “weak application volumes” in Q4 2014.

SVR loan balances fell £2.1bn to £41.8bn, although the bank says it had retained around 80 per cent of customers with maturing loans.

Loans above 85 per cent LTV accounted for 18 per cent of its lending in the first quarter, while its average LTV was 65 per cent, the same as it was at the end of December.

Customer deposit balances grew 4.7 per cent from £147.6bn in Q1 2014 to £154.6bn at the end of March.

Pre-tax profit grew 13 per cent, from £416m in the first quarter of 2014 to £470m in Q1 2015.

Chief executive Nathan Bostock says: “The UK economy continues to be supportive of our business in 2015. We await further clarification on the regulatory landscape this year, in relation to capital, leverage, conduct and banking structure. Early completion of these reforms, in a proportionate way, will help us to contribute fully to the UK’s ongoing economic recovery.”