Fridays figures show slowdown in mortgage approvals

Paresh Davdra is the Dealing Director of RationalFX, Currency Specialists. Tuesday 07th October 2014 11:45 EDT

The Bank of England reported mortgage approvals for house purchases eased back to 64,212 from 66,100 in July and 66,923 in June. These figures were released after Friday's reports showing a slowdown in September. New rules implemented by the Bank of England mean lenders are to be prevented from allocating more than 15% of new residential mortgages to individuals borrowing four and a half times their income or greater.

Policy makers have acknowledged the limit will only have an impact if house prices rise more than 20% between now and early 2017.The property market also appears to be giving some hope to first time buyers with house price growth slowing in September. The nationwide house price index fell 0.2% from August to September, this figure marked the first monthly fall in the index for 17 months. It seems banks tighter lending criteria and the prospect of an interest rate rises dampening demand. In the US last week consumer confidence hit a four month low.

The Confidence Board’s monthly survey of morale dipped to 86.0 from 93.4 in August with Consumers saying they were more worried about job prospects and likely future economic conditions.However better news in the labour market for the US, with the private sector adding 213,000 new jobs last month; this was slightly ahead of expectations.

The number of Americans filing applications for unemployment benefits unexpectedly fell last week; a sign the job market is sustaining progress. Jobless claims dropped by 8,000 to 287,000 in the week ended September 27th, from a revised 295,000 in the prior period.Firings are hovering close to decade lows as employers benefiting from rising demand to retain staff, laying the ground for more hiring and wage gains.

A report today is projected to show employers added to payrolls in September and the jobless rate held at a six-year low.The Dollar strengthened on Friday after the much anticipated nonfarm payroll employment figure increased by 248,000 in September and the unemployment rate declined to 5.9 percent. Employment increased in professional and business services, retail trade and health care giving a welcome boost to the economy. The report also showed that average hourly earnings were stagnant in September from a month earlier, while the participation rate, which measures the number of Americans employed or looking for a job as a share of the working-age population, decreased to 62.7 percent, the lowest since February 1978, from 62.8 percent a month before.

Germanys unemployment rate unexpectedly rose for a second month as seasonal factors combined with economic risks from the Ukraine crisis to a faltering euro-area recovery contributed to a poor jobless figure. The number of people out of work climbed a seasonally adjusted 12,000 to 2.92 million in September Economists forecast a decline of 2,000. While this is a disappointing figure the jobless rate was unchanged at 6.7 percent, the lowest level in more than two decades.

Pressure continues to mounting on the European Central Bank to take fresh action after inflation in the euro area fell to just 0.3% this month, and core inflation weakened to 0.7%. Off the back of this the euro fell to fresh two-year lows against both the US dollar and the pound, as the market anticipates more easing from the ECBUnemployment remained unchanged at 11.5 across the single currency region, while slightly better than the 12% set last year the figure is still far to high. There are sharp differences between Member States The lowest unemployment rates were recorded in Austria (4.7%) and Germany (4.9%), according to Eurostat’s methodology and the highest in Greece (27.0% in June 2014) and Spain (24.4%).

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