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Bank of England Mortgage Approvals and Lending December 2023

  • Annual growth in unsecured lending rose by 8.5% in December from an 8.6% rise last month.
  • Consumers borrowed an additional £1.2bn in consumer credit on net, falling from last month’s £2.1bn.
  • The easing was driven by borrowing through credit cards which fell to £0.3bn in December from £1.0bn in November. Net borrowing through other forms of consumer credit edged lower to £0.9bn in December (from £1.1bn last month). 
  • Mortgage approvals for house purchases rose to 50,459 in December, from 49,313 in November. This was the highest figure since June and ahead of the previous six-month average of 48,460. 
  • Individuals repaid, on net, £0.8bn of mortgage debt in December compared to zero in November. 
  • Notably, the annual growth rate for net mortgage lending was flat for the first time on record. 
  • The ‘effective’ interest rate (the actual interest paid) on newly drawn mortgages fell marginally to 5.28% in December – the first drop since November 2021. 
  • Approvals for remortgaging also rose to 30,833 from 25,659 in November.

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