IMLA comments on the latest BBA figures for July

The Intermediary Mortgage Lenders Association (IMLA), the trade association for UK lenders involved in the generation of mortgage business through professional financial intermediaries, comments on today’s figures from the British Bankers’ Association

Peter Williams, Executive Director of IMLA, said:

“It is no surprise that these figures are not stronger. While there has been a marked improvement in the wholesale funding markets this year (particularly structured finance) in terms of both volume and cost, the retail savings markets have remained tight and relatively expensive.

“The combination of increased capital requirements and conduct of business controls impacting on lenders generally will mean the supply of mortgages will continue to be in short supply. As such the industry will not be able to satisfy the housing aspirations of all, and a material level of growth going forward will continue to be a challenge.

“This is not a complaint it’s just a fact of life in an environment where the demand for safer banks and safe lending to consumers is prioritised to the degree that it is.

“The new Funding for Lending scheme may have an impact on gross lending but the benefit is most likely to be directed at lower risk lending which therefore has the potential to distort markets further.

“IMLA has serious reservations about the manner in which Funding for Lending is not being made available to smaller banks and building societies and specialist lenders. Aside from being anti-competitive it means that these facilities are not available to those businesses that have a strong track record of innovation. Many which have also been well managed through the financial crisis and have not required a subsidy from public funds to keep them afloat.”

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