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UK Mortgage Approvals At 8-month Low: BoE

Loans approved for house purchase fell to its lowest level in eight months in December, figures from the Bank of England showed on Wednesday.

The number of mortgage approvals was 63,793 in December, which was the lowest since April, when they totaled 63,433. Economists had expected 63,000 approvals.

Th lending secured on dwellings grew by GBP 4.1 billion, which exceeded the GBP 3.6 billion gain economists had predicted.

The net consumer credit grew GBP 0.7 billion, which was less than the GBP 0.8 billion increase expected.

The annual growth rate of consumer credit fell further in December to 6.6 percent. This reflected the continuation of relatively weak flows of new lending, the bank said.

UK businesses further raised funds through bank lending and commercial paper in December. They also made large net redemptions of bonds in for the second month in a row, the bank noted, which contrast with strong issuance earlier in the year.

Elsewhere, Britons significantly increased their deposits in interest-bearing instant access savings accounts in December, contributing to an increase in households' money holdings. Such moves reflect the efforts to prepare for a chaotic Brexit.

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