Top stories

  1. UK Finance data shows mortgage arrears remain at historic low
  2. Brexit deal near completion

Stat of the day

$50 trillion – the value of mobile payments expected in China by 2020.

UK Finance data shows mortgage arrears remain at historic low

UK Finance has today published its Mortgage Arrears and Possessions Update for the third quarter of 2018, which reveals there were 77,600 homeowner mortgages in arrears of 2.5 per cent or more of the outstanding balance, five per cent fewer than in the same quarter of the previous year.

Jackie Bennett, Director of Mortgages at UK Finance, commented:

“It is encouraging that homeowner arrears and repossessions remain at historically low levels, which shows the vast majority of borrowers continue to repay their mortgages in full and on time each month.

“We would always encourage anyone with concerns about making their mortgage repayments to contact their lender to discuss the advice and support available.”

Meanwhile, research by the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors has found the housing market is at its weakest for six years, with agents reporting that it will stay in limbo until a Brexit deal is completed with property prices falling in London, East Anglia, the south-east and south-west (Guardian, p36).

Brexit deal near completion

Prime Minister Theresa May has begun briefing her Cabinet on the text of the near complete Brexit deal, as her negotiators seek to finalise the outstanding issues in Brussels (Bloomberg). The remaining part of the deal to be decided is the guarantee to keep goods trade flowing freely across the Irish border.  The Financial Times  (p1, £) reports, environment secretary Michael Gove and other Eurosceptic ministers want assurances that Britain has an escape route from a “temporary” customs union and have demanded to see the full legal advice on the issue from attorney-general Geoffrey Cox.

Separately, the Guardian (online only) has published a joint opinion piece from former French Prime Minister Bernard Cazeneuve and former British defence minister George Robertson, discussing how Brexit has exacerbated tensions over security cooperation between the UK and the EU. This could have significant ramifications for areas of shared importance, such as cybersecurity. The Times (p6, £) adds that French President Emmanuel Macron is aware France would have to take on more of the security burden in the event of a ‘no-deal’ Brexit’.

Latest from UK Finance

In today’s blog, Ian Burgess, Principal, Technology and Digital Policy Delivery, explores promoting a more cyber resilient culture across financial services.

News in Brief

Thousands of young people have been targeted by gangs offering hundreds of pounds to use them as “money mules”, the City of London Police has warned today (Huffington Post, online only).

Reuters (online only) reports that the European Central Bank has chosen Andrea Enria as the new head of its supervisory arm.

European regulators have been asked to investigate several data brokers, credit rating agencies and technology companies to see if they are breaching the EU’s new data protection laws (Financial Times, p7, £).

The Mifid II regulations have dampened liquidity and cut analyst coverage of companies, according to investment research firm, Hardman & Co analysis (City AM, p2).

The Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) has informed banks that they may have to contact 150,000 customers who were rejected for payment protection insurance compensation to tell them they are eligible to make a fresh complaint (Financial Times, p7, £).

What the commentators say

Tim Wallace, Senior Economics Editor at The Daily Telegraph (B8, £) writes that chancellor Philip Hammond can reinvigorate the UK economy by harnessing Britain’s digital and fin tech potential. He believes a number of changes could help unlock this potential, such as changing regulations, investing in coding schools and giving consumers more power over their data.

Lucy Tobin, personal finance editor at the Evening Standard (p52), describes how China is leading the way in the mobile payment revolution. She details how mobile payments are used for everything, from hailing taxis to buying street goods, with the two largest payment firms having more than 1.7 billion active users. The value of mobile payments was $15 trillion in 2017 and is expected to rise to $50 trillion by 2020. She concludes that this growth will only continue, with Chinese companies eyeing an expansion into the UK.


  • UK Finance publishes Mortgage Arrears and Possessions data, Q3 2018
  • EU autumn economic forecasts
  • FCA launches PPI consumer campaign
  • US interest rate decision

For a full list of upcoming UK Finance statistics releases, please click here.

News in brief – 8 November 2018