Mortgage lending has slumped to its lowest level for 13 years, the latest Bank of England figures suggest.
The number of new mortgages approved for house purchase fell slightly in February to just 73,000, the Bank says, a 39% drop on the same month a year ago.
In addition, housing equity withdrawal also fell in the last quarter of 2007 to £7.3bn, as did remortgaging.
The statistics highlight the strife gripping the mortgage industry at present, with high prices driving away first-time buyers and the credit crunch hitting banks bidding to raise money to lend to customers.
February saw the number of new loans approved for people moving their mortgage deals to new lenders fall to 111,000 from 118,00 in January.
In addition, equity withdrawal in the last quarter of 2007 fell by 33% compared to the previous three months, and was down by nearly half on the same period twelve months before. It is now at its lowest level for nearly three years.
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