8 Dec

Bank makes mortgage increase pledge

Bank makes mortgage increase pledge

HSBC has said it will increase the amount of mortgage finance available to UK customers next year, even if this means it is bucking a downward trend.

The lender has revealed it intends to raise the amount of funding available to £15 billion, up 20 per cent on this year and twice as much as was available in 2007.

HSBC managing director Paul Thurston commented that the bank "has no intention of closing its doors to customers".

This increase in funding may encourage those such as Bank of England governor Mervyn King, who have argued that the "most pressing" need for the UK economy to avoid a deeper recession is for bank lending to rise.

The HSBC decision may indicate that there is more room for optimism in this respect than suggested last week by the Council of Mortgage Lenders (CML) director general Michael Coogan.

Speaking at the CML annual conference, Mr Coogan forecast that the return to 2007 levels of lending that the government wishes to see will not take place.

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