The BBA has published its latest High Street Banking Statistics for September 2016
• House purchase approval numbers are 15% lower than in September 2015 and in the first nine months of 2016 they are 3% lower than in the same period of 2015.
• Consumer credit continues to show annual growth of over 6% despite only moderate retail sales growth supported in the case of personal loans and overdrafts by favourable interest rates.
• Borrowing by non-financial companies decreased by £0.3bn in September following a small decline in August.
Dr Rebecca Harding, BBA chief economist, said:
“Consumer credit is growing at its fastest rate since December 2006, driven by strong demand for personal loans and credit cards. Consumers are increasingly using short-term borrowing to take advantage of record low interest rates. This trend has accelerated since the Bank of England cut rates in August.
“Mortgage approvals picked up slightly this month but the housing market continues to shows signs of underlying weakness. Both house purchase and remortgaging approvals are down on the corresponding figures for 2015.
“Business borrowing decreased slightly again in September, which may be in part down to uncertainty following the EU referendum. There is a longer time lag behind corporate investment decisions so it may take longer for the effect of the interest rate cut to filter through to such borrowing.”