June mortgage approvals down 50% from year-earlier level       

Mortgage applications approved in June, when the Covid-19 restrictions on most parts of the economy started to be lifted, rose to 2,263 but were still almost 50% below June 2019
June mortgage approvals down 50% from year-earlier level       
generic stock business news mortgage. Mortgage loan agreement application with key on house shaped keyring. Picture: iStock

Mortgage applications approved in June -- when the Covid-19 restrictions on most parts of the economy started to be lifted -- rose in the month to 2,263 but were still almost 50% below the June 2019 number, the industry group for banks has said.

And for the full three months to the end of June, there were 6,622 new mortgages drawn down, a drop of almost 35% from a year earlier, the Banking and Payments Federation Ireland said. 

The mortgage figures are closely watched because they have a bearing for the profitability of banks and for house prices amid the Covid-19 economic crisis. 

Leading economists say the Covid restrictions on house building will also likely have longstanding effects. 

Brian Hayes, chief executive of the banking group, said borrowers "should actively proceed with mortgage applications where their incomes and employment circumstances have not been impacted by the current pandemic". 

Meanwhile, Ulster Bank said it was offering €500 up to September 21 for mortgage switchers.   

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