Demand for bank lending slows

23 August 2011

Banks saw a lack of demand for lending in July as Brits continued to be cautious about building up new debt.

We seem to be borrowing less. Unsecured credit has shrunk by 1.1% over the past year, while personal deposits rose by 3.8%, according to the British Bankers' Association.


But we are all saving a lot less than we used to. In the first seven months of 2011, deposits and savings increased by just £8.6 billion compared with £16.3 billion over the same period last year.

Read our round-up of the best saving rates

Over two years, credit card debt has expanded slightly but this is mainly down to the interest added to accounts rather than new debt. Repayment of loans and overdrafts continues to outweigh new lending.

Mortgage lending was flat in July with gross lending remaining at £7.6 billion, the same as the previous month. That follows an 11% fall in gross mortgage lending between May and June.

It isn't all bad news for the housing market though. Slightly more home loans were approved in July and the average house price of £151,500 was 2% higher than last summer. And mortgage repayments have remained fairly high, leading to a very small increase in net mortgage lending by just £0.9 billion.

Growth in the buy-to-let market has led to a increase in the number of remortgage approvals which were 14% higher this July than at the same point last year.

If you are considering remortgaging or buying a new property check out our updated article on the best mortgages on the market.


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