Key data highlights:

  • Gross mortgage lending across the residential market in October was £25.5bn, some 5.6 per cent higher than last October.
  • The number of mortgages approved by the main high street banks in October was 4.1 per cent lower than last October; although approvals for house purchase were 3.6 per cent higher, remortgage approvals were 13.5 per cent lower and approvals for other secured borrowing were 1.3 per cent lower.
  • The £11.3bn of credit card spending in October was 12.1 per cent higher than last October. Over the past twelve months, the outstanding level of credit card borrowing grew by 5.7 per cent. Personal borrowing through loans and overdrafts grew by 2.3 per cent in the year to October.
  • Personal deposits in total grew by 0.8 per cent over the past twelve months. Deposits held in instant access accounts were 2.6 per cent higher than last October.

Commenting on the data, Eric Leenders, Managing Director, Personal Finance at UK Finance, said:

“Overall mortgage lending grew in October, despite an uncertain economic environment, while house purchase mortgage approvals by the main high street banks were also up on the previous year.

“However remortgaging activity has softened, following a period of strong growth driven by fixed rate loans reaching maturity and anticipation of August’s base rate rise.

“Households are taking a measured approach to credit, with repayments on credit cards broadly in line with spending.

“This reflects the growing preference of customers to use their credit cards as a means of payment rather than a borrowing mechanism, making the most of additional consumer protections and value-added benefits.”

Notes to Editors

  1. For more information please call the UK Finance Press Office on 020 7416 6750 or e-mail
  2. UK Finance is the trade association formed on 1 July 2017 to represent the banking and finance industry operating in the UK. It represents more than 250 firms in the UK providing credit, banking, markets and payment-related services. The organisation brings together most of the activities previously carried out by the Asset Based Finance Association, the British Bankers’ Association, the Council of Mortgage Lenders, Financial Fraud Action UK, Payments UK and the UK Cards Association.
  3. Data in this update referred to as main high street banks reflects more than two-thirds of all UK lending and deposit activity provided by all banks and building societies and is indicative of household behaviour.
Household Finance Update – October 2018