UK lenders see demand for mortgages, credit cards plummeting before Brexit – BoE
LONDON, (Reuters) – – Lenders in Britain expect demand for mortgages and credit card lending to fall by the greatest extent in several years, a Bank of England survey showed on Thursday, adding to signs of an economic slowdown before Brexit.
The Bank of England’s gauge of demand for mortgage lending over the next three months fell to -17.5 in the fourth quarter of 2018 from 0.2 in the third quarter, its lowest level since the end of 2010.
Its measure of demand for credit card lending over the next three months fell to -20.7 from -7.2, the weakest reading since the quarterly Credit Conditions Survey started in 2007.
Earlier on Thursday, the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveys said expectations for British house sales over the next three months fell in December to their lowest level since records began 20 years ago.
Britain is due to leave the EU on March 29 and whether businesses will still be able to trade without disruption to cross-border supply chains remains unclear, creating a cloud of economic uncertainty.
Britain’s housing market has slowed since the June 2016 Brexit referendum with house prices, as measured by mortgage lenders Halifax and Nationwide, growing at the slowest pace in around five years.
(Reporting by Andy Bruce, editing by Andy Bruce)