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  • Mortgage approvals as tracked by the British Bankers Association fell in February to 30,500 down from 32,000 in January, the lowest level for six months.
    • The BBA also noted that credit card borrowing was also up in February.
  • House prices as measured by the Nationwide were unchanged between February and March this year, however prices in March were 0.8% higher than in March 2012, the annual increase is the first the index has seen since February 2012

UK Economy

  • Service sector output increased by 0.8% in January this year compared to a year ago the ONS reported. The largest contributions came from business services and finance which increased by 0.8% and government and other services which was up by 0.9%.
  • The UK’s current account deficit rose to £58bn in 2012 according to the ONS the highest for almost 25 years, the increase from 2011’s deficit of £20bn is mainly due to a shift in the balance of UK earnings from investments abroad, which shrank, against earnings of foreign companies based in the UK.
  • Consumer confidence as measured by the GfK NOP held steady in March for the third straight month at a reading of -26, the reading was 5 points higher than at the same time a year ago suggesting consumer confidence has risen.
  • The ONS reported that labour productivity on an output per hour basis fell by 0.5% in the fourth quarter of 2012 compared to the third quarter.


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