W Bromwich society follows Abbey move

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The Independent Online
THE small West Bromwich Building Society has followed the Abbey National and postponed its mortgage rate cut scheduled for 1 November, in favour of a larger cut in December.

The rate comes down from 10.7 per cent to 9.6 per cent rather than 9.99 per cent.

This brings down the monthly payments on a pounds 50,000 endowment mortgage from pounds 378 to pounds 339 - a saving of pounds 39.

Glenn Elliot, chief executive of the society, which is ranked at 22 in the league of building societies and has 39,000 borrowers, said: 'We are confidently anticipating that the Chancellor will cut the base rate. The money markets have been discounting a cut of at least 0.5 per cent for some time. It's true we have gambled on a rate cut, but it's a pretty good gamble.'

He added that the move to lower mortgage rates was a contribution to stimulating the housing market.

Savers' rates are not coming down yet.

No other lenders have yet followed the Abbey National. Most would rather wait until a base rate cut materialises. They are all watching each other to see if there is going to be a general move ahead of a base rate cut.