Society savings inflows highest for eight years
The BSA found that:
– Building societies had net inflows of £1,138m up from £998m in December 2004.
– Building society net receipts to cash ISAs were £38m in December 2005.
– Building society gross advances amounted to £3,614m in December 2005, compared to £3,108m in December 2004.
– Net advances were £828m in December 2005, versus £907m in December 2004.
– Approvals (loans agreed, but not yet made) were £3,154m in December 2005 up from £2,572m in December 2004.
Adrian Coles, director-general of the BSA, said of the savings market: “Net savings inflows in 2005 were the highest since 1997 and the second highest since 1988. Clearly people trust building societies to offer good value and a safe home for their savings. Overindebtedness grabs the headlines, but these figures show that many people are sensibly looking after their future.”
On the mortgage side, Mr Coles said: “There were major concerns expressed by some commentators at the end of 2004 about the long-term health of the market. 2005 has been the year in which we have learnt that a soft landing is achievable. Looking forward, in 2006 we expect a steady, benign market, with house price inflation no longer a general concern. With the wide range of mortgage products available and no letting up of competition in the market, there will be some good deals for house buyers this year.”