BSA points to buoyant market
– Building societies had net inflows of £384m up from £221m in March 2005.
– Building society gross advances amounted to £4,199m in March 2006, up from £3,491m in March 2005.
– Net advances were £815m in March 2006, up from £781m in March 2005.
– Approvals were £5,643m in March 2006 up from £4,499m in March 2005.
– Building society net receipts in cash ISAs were £603m in March 2006, up from £499m in March 2005.
Adrian Coles, director-general of the Building Societies Association, said of the savings market: “Savings inflows into building societies remain strong. The first quarter’s figure was over four times that of 2005 and the highest Q1 inflow since 2001. The slightly uncertain economic environment has seen many households turning to building societies for competitive products and a safe home for their savings. It is also notable that net inflows to ISAs were up by 20 per cent in March compared to a year ago.”
On the mortgage side, Mr Coles said: “Lending activity is well up on a year ago, suggesting building societies are taking a significant share as the market recovers relatively strongly this spring. Particularly notable is the high approvals figure for March, suggesting a high level of lending as the Spring progresses.”