HSBC has confirmed it will lend up to £15bn in mortgages to UK homeowners in 2009, an increase of 20% on its lending this year, and almost double what it lent in 2007.
Paul Thurston, managing director of HSBC UK, explains: "By some estimates, net mortgage lending in the UK will fall next year, but HSBC has no intention of closing its doors to customers, nor will we compromise our reputation for responsible lending."
Alan Keir, co-head of commercial banking at the lender, adds: "This is new money, new money to support struggling small businesses that bank with us. We have heard that their critical need is for working capital, so we are responding to that."
But HSBC says it was not trying to stimulate the property market by bringing in first-time buyers who would otherwise continue to be frozen out. Much of its lending is likely to be to existing borrowers who are either moving house, or simply staying put but moving their mortgage deals.IFAonline
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