The Council of Mortgage Lenders estimates that total gross mortgage lending increased by 4% on March to £12.1 billion in April, but cautions that meaningful comparisons with last April are difficult.
Commenting on market conditions in this month’s Market Commentary, CML chief economist Bob Pannell observes:
“Our forward estimate is that gross lending in April was £12.1 billion. This would have been 4% up on March. The comparison with April last year – 21% higher – is flattered by the temporary dearth of house buying activity immediately following the closure of the stamp duty concession.
“The true underlying position is that April is likely to have been one of the strongest months for lending activity since late 2008, but not as strong as the year-earlier comparison suggests. Gross lending on a seasonally adjusted basis has been running comfortably above £12 billion for several months, but this is still barely half the average level of lending seen in 2003-4.”
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