LONDON – - British consumers borrowed money at the weakest rate in more than three years last month after a big fall in new car sales, the Bank of England said on Monday, in news likely to raise concerns about the economy’s strength.
The BoE data showed the growth rate in unsecured consumer lending slowed to 7.7 percent in the year to September from August’s 8.2 percent, the weakest pace since June 2015.
Looking at the three months to September alone, credit growth was the weakest since January 2014, up just 5.5 percent on an annualised basis.
The Bank of England said the drop reflected a sharp fall in demand for car finance following weak sales in September, normally a key month for the British auto industry due to a twice yearly change in licence plate numbers.
(Reporting by David Milliken and Andy Bruce)