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Barclays admits reporting error on UKFI product transfer data – exclusive

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  • 29/11/2018
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Barclays held its hands up to a product transfer reporting error today that over-inflated the lender mortgage switching market by £30bn, according to UK Finance compiled figures.

 

Barclays said its gross mortgage lending figures are correct, but that the voluntarily-given rate switch data was inaccurate. The bank added that this does not form any part of its financial reporting obligations.

A Barclays spokesperson told Mortgage Solutions: “As soon as we identified this voluntary reporting error, we acted swiftly to alert UK Finance. Action has been taken to provide accurate retrospective information and to ensure that this error is not repeated in the future.”

Data for Q1 was originally reported to total £53.7bn; following the amendment the figure is now £38.8bn, while for Q2 the figure has been revised down to £36bn of mortgage debt refinanced internally from the original figure of £53.8bn.

Direct versus broker channel

 

However, by channel, brokers have the edge on direct business. In Q3, out of 156,900 product transfers, £21.4bn, were conducted on an advised basis and 135,000 transfers, worth £17.3bn, were execution-only.

Robert Sinclair, who noted the market was larger than expected in July when the size was first reported, said: “The interesting number, which is the number of consumers getting advice and those who are not, doesn’t really change.”

He observed that given the ‘embryonic’ nature of the dataset, reporting errors happen, adding that the size of the product transfer market is still around £150-160bn, down from an estimated £200bn earlier in the year.

He added it’s an error that it’s hard to get ‘emotional’ about.”

Commenting on the Q3 2018 data, Jackie Bennett, director of Mortgages at UK Finance said: “Despite the downwards revisions, these figures show that customer engagement remains high and the majority of mortgage customers switch to a new deal shortly after their previous deal expires.”

Product transfers are transactions where the borrower moves to a new deal rate with the same lender, without changing any other terms of the mortgage that would trigger a new Regulated Mortgage Contract (RMC).

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