Northern Rock Still Offering Mortgages 6 Times Salary

Discussion in 'Wall St. News' started by THE-BEAKER, Sep 24, 2007.

  1. and they wonder why they are in trouble.

    what a joke.

    Northern Rock stands accused of “reckless” lending after it emerged this weekend that the beleaguered bank is still offering mortgages of six times salary to potential borrowers.

    Despite provoking the worst banking crisis for decades, the bank last week offered a reporter posing as a first-time buyer a £180,000 mortgage even though he had a salary of only £30,000.

    The loan was at least £30,000 more than other leading lenders were prepared to offer. Repayments for the loan would have accounted for more than 60% of the fictional buyer’s take-home salary.

    The reporter, posing as another potential customer, was also offered a so-called “negative equity mortgage” worth 117% of the value of the property he claimed to be interested in buying. The mortgages offered by other banks to the same potential borrower were significantly lower.

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    Financial experts were this weekend stunned that Northern Rock is offering such loans a week after it was forced to turn to the Bank of England for emergency funding. Yesterday it emerged that Northern Rock has been forced to borrow about £3 billion from the Bank in the past week.

    Northern Rock is to court further controversy by pushing ahead with a plan to pay a £59m dividend to shareholders and executives this week. The Financial Services Authority gave special dispensation to the bank in July to dip into its assets to pay out the dividend – which is 30% higher than last year’s payout.

    Politicians yesterday expressed dismay that the government and its regulators had not stepped in to supervise Northern Rock’s business practices following the government bail-out. George Osborne, shadow chancellor, said: “One week Alistair Darling [the chancellor] is attacking the lending culture in this country, the next he is issuing emergency guarantees for people’s mortgages and savings.”

    George Mudie, a Labour member of the Treasury select committee said: “Of all the people, have Northern Rock learnt nothing? It is reckless.”

    When the Sunday Times reporter posing as a 24-year-old first-time buyer approached Northern Rock last week he was offered a range of huge mortgages. The bank’s mortgage adviser provisionally told the reporter after he revealed his salary was £30,000 that he could borrow £180,000 towards the cost of a £200,000 home. One option offered was for a fixed two-year rate at 6.29% with a “product fee” of £1,995. The deal offered is not market leading but compares favourably with competitors.

    Of other mortgage providers approached using the same salary figure, Bradford & Bingley said the maximum it could lend was £127,500, Alliance & Leicester offered £149,000 and Abbey £138,000.
  2. Risk free lending practices secured through AAA status....what do you want more ? :D
  3. Talk about moral hazard :D
  4. zdreg


    what investment ideas can you suggest resulting from moral hazard?