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Announcement:

Moody's: UK RMBS performance will continue to improve in 2013

31 Jan 2013

London, 31 January 2013 -- In 2013, mortgage arrears across UK residential mortgage-backed securities (RMBS) will marginally reduce from their current level of 1.8%, says Moody's Investors Service in a Special Comment report published today. Lenders surveyed have not observed the emergence of any new payment problem trends and are confident that arrears levels would not increase in the absence of large shocks to unemployment and interest rates. Although originations post credit crunch continue to perform better, older vintages have some downside risk as cost pressures bear on homeowners.

The new report, titled "UK Mortgages: Performance Will Continue to Improve in 2013", is now available on www.moodys.com. Moody's subscribers can access this report via the link provided at the end of this press release.

Moody's notes that lenders surveyed are cautiously optimistic for the UK housing market in 2013. Although aggregate drawings for the funding for lending scheme (FLS) were only GBP4.4 billion at 3 December 2012, lenders believe that the scheme will help to support the market in 2013. Some lenders have even revised upwards the amount they expected to lend in 2013, as a result of their more optimistic market expectations. While lenders continue to see a soft housing market, they believe that overall arrears levels will fall as newer vintages perform very strongly and arrears from older vintages are worked out. A number of lenders were looking at strengthening their servicing practices for borrowers with interest-only mortgages.

"In our view, high loan-to-value (LTV) ratios will remain the key default driver in 2013," says Jonathan Livingstone, a Moody's Vice President—Senior Analyst and author of the report. Borrowers with a higher LTV are less able to resolve payment problems by trading out of their property. Currently, benchmark loans with an LTV of at least 80% have an arrears rate of over seven times and a repossession rate of over 14 times that of loans below this level.

"We also note that, single and low-mid income households, first-time buyers and self-employed borrowers will face more payment difficulties in 2013," continues Mr. Livingstone. Although interest rates remain low, Moody's lender survey suggests that increases in the cost of living and weak wage growth are affecting some households. Moody's expects that single and low-mid income households will face increased payment difficulties as a result of the current squeeze on benefits. Self-employed borrowers and first-time buyers will also be affected by affordability concerns.

Moody's believes that, low interest rates are suppressing the level of arrears on certain types of loans. In particular, interest-only loans now have lower arrears levels than repayment loans. Similarly, buy-to-let (BTL) loans, which are predominately interest only, are outperforming owner occupied loans.

Subscribers can access this report via this link: http://www.moodys.com/research/UK-Mortgages-Performance-Will-Continue-to-Improve-in-2013--PBS_SF308124

NOTE TO JOURNALISTS ONLY: For more information, please call one of our global press information hotlines: London +44-20-7772-5456, New York +1-212-553-0376, Tokyo +813-5408-4110, Hong Kong +852-3758-1350, Sydney +61-2-9270-8141, Mexico City 001-888-779-5833, São Paulo 0800-891-2518, or Buenos Aires 0800-666-3506. You can also email us at mediarelations@moodys.com or visit our web site at www.moodys.com.

Jonathan?Livingstone
Vice President - Senior Analyst
Structured Finance Group
Moody's Investors Service Ltd.
One Canada Square
Canary Wharf
London E14 5FA
United Kingdom
JOURNALISTS: 44 20 7772 5456
SUBSCRIBERS: 44 20 7772 5454

Annabel?Schaafsma
Senior Vice President
Structured Finance Group
JOURNALISTS: 44 20 7772 5456
SUBSCRIBERS: 44 20 7772 5454

Releasing Office:
Moody's Investors Service Ltd.
One Canada Square
Canary Wharf
London E14 5FA
United Kingdom
JOURNALISTS: 44 20 7772 5456
SUBSCRIBERS: 44 20 7772 5454

Moody's: UK RMBS performance will continue to improve in 2013
No Related Data.
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