Mortgage lending in July was little changed month-on-month but significantly above analysts' forecasts, the latest Bank of England figures show.
Mortgage approvals numbered 48,722 in July, up from an upwardly-revised 48,562 in June. Analysts had forecast a reading of 46,500.
Approvals for remortgaging, at 26,951, were up on June and also higher than the previous six-month average of 26,235.
In the UK, total net lending to individuals rose by £0.3 billion in July, keeping the twelve-month lending growth rate unchanged at 0.8%.
The three-month annualised growth rate fell to 0.5% in July, from 0.6% in June.
Aside from credit card lending, which rose by £0.2 billion in July, other loans and advances remained in line with the previous six-month average.
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