Mortgage lending enjoys slight improvement

<p>Mortgage lending in the UK was up between July and September.</p>

Mortgage lending has enjoyed a slight improvement over the course of the third quarter of the year, buoying financial organisations' shares on the FTSE 100.

According to the Council of Mortgage Lenders (CML), 146,500 mortgages were advanced for house purchases over the July-September period, which is 13 per cent higher than the previous quarter and matches the same timeframe in 2011.

However, September's performance was disappointing, with the number of loans approved dropping by 17.6 per cent after a strong August to just 44,000 mortgages.

Nevertheless, the CML believes the outlook is encouraging overall, despite the blip in September.

Paul Smee of the CML said: "While lending in September was slow after a particularly strong August, quarterly figures suggest that the underlying picture is more positive."

At 11:55 GMT today (November 12th), the FTSE 100 advanced by 0.3 per cent to an index value of 5786.9 points, with Lloyds Banking Group making gains of 3.1 per cent to 4497p per share.

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