Newspaper article The Journal (Newcastle, England)

Rock to Play Its Part in Digging Us out; A ROLE FOR THE ROCK Darling Heeds Journal's Call for Action

Newspaper article The Journal (Newcastle, England)

Rock to Play Its Part in Digging Us out; A ROLE FOR THE ROCK Darling Heeds Journal's Call for Action

Article excerpt

Byline: William Green Political Editor

NORTHERN Rock is set to play a major role in kick-starting the ailing British economy - in a victory for a Journal campaign.

We have won widespread support after calling on ministers to allow the North East-based bank to increase lending to help consumers and businesses find they credit they need during the recession.

And Chancellor Alistair Darling yesterday told MPs he was now considering how Northern Rock can best support "prudent" lending to creditworthy customers who need mortgages, but cannot afford deposits of 25%.

Northern Rock also confirmed it was actively looking at increasing lending as the bank and ministers continue a review of its business plan. The Government also eased requirements on the bank to rapidly repay a multi-billion pound taxpayer loan that had forced it to redeem mortgages.

Existing customers on fixed-rate mortgages had been encouraged to find deals with other lenders. But they could now switch to lower rates at the Rock.

The original plan had been approved in conjunction with the EU amid rules over state aid to private companies. And Brussels bosses will still need to rule on the new plan.

The developments formed part of a new banking package unveiled by the Government just months after a pounds 37bn bailout for financial institutions.

Andrew Sugden, policy director at the North East Chamber of Commerce, heralded the news over Northern Rock as the first victory in The Journal campaign.

He said: "The Journal has helped to push things along. It has certainly showed the support for Northern Rock in the North East.

"And the other good thing is that this is just a first step and the campaign can continue with the goal of seeing the lending increase."

Vince Cable, the respected Liberal Democrat Treasury spokesman, welcomed the new strategy because of a dramatic change in economic conditions. …

Search by... Author
Show... All Results Primary Sources Peer-reviewed

Oops!

An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.