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  • The Council of Mortgage Lenders reported that gross mortgage lending in August was £12.6bn marginally lower than the £12.7bn reported in July and a fall of 4% from last Augusts £13.1bn. The CML also commented that they hoped the Bank of England’s Funding for Lending Scheme would give mortgage lending a well needed boost in the coming months.
  • A survey from CBI/KPMG on UK infrastructure showed the UK to be deficient in a number of areas; 60% of respondents viewed infrastructure elsewhere in the EU to be better than the UK.
    • 61% of respondents rate UK transport infrastructure as below average by international standards.

UK Economy

  • More evidence to suggest that pressure on consumers is beginning to ease; retail sales data from the ONS showed that in August the total amount of goods sold (sales volumes) increased by 2.7% compared by to the same period last year. The amount of money spent in the sector (sales values) increased by 3% over the same period.
    • Internet sales were estimate to be 8.1% of total retail sales, the lowest proportion since August last year. The ONS reported that online retailers attributed the low share of online sales to “consumers [who] watched the Olympics instead of shopping online.” 
  • Minutes from the MPC meeting in early September revealed little that is not already known about the current situation; the minutes confirmed the committee’s belief that there is still significant amounts of spare capacity in the economy that will continue to press down on prices. However taken in light of upward pressures from rises in the international price of oil, the rate of domestic inflation will cool at a slower rate than anticipated previously.
    • The Funding for Lending Scheme, the Banks attempt to stimulate lending in the economy, was said to still be too recently introduced to assess its impact. However the Bank took indications that lending rates had fallen as a sign in the schemes favour.

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