UK mortgage lending up 16% in March

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Mortgage lending rose 16 per cent in March from the previous month but was still less than half the volume seen a year earlier, the Council of Mortgage Lenders said today.

Gross lending was estimated at £11.5bn in March, up from £9.9bn in February; that was 52 per cent below the March 2008 figure of £24.2bn.

Gross lending in the first quarter was 29 per cent less than in the fourth quarter, the council said. Normally, lending falls 10 per cent between the two quarters, the council said.

The Council of Mortgage Lenders represents banks, building societies and other lenders who account for 98 per cent of residential mortgage lending in the UK.

In a separate report, the Government's Revenue and Customs agency said 60,000 homes changed hands in March, a 40 per cent increase from February.

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