Evening Standard

Sensible people needed at top for calm markets

- Simon English @SimonEngSt­and

LIZ TRUSS complains that a cabal of stuck-in-the-mud economists did for her plans to reform the UK’s finances before they ever had a chance to get going.

The more obvious view is that markets looked at what she had to offer and took fright because they were dangerous. They certainly calmed down once she was gone.

What has happened since? In the mortgage market the picture could hardly be moving more rapidly in our favour. The Bank of England is still putting interest rates up. But mortgage deals are already getting cheaper on the expectatio­n that the longer term trend is downwards.

One expert says there is a “mortgage price war”. Steven Morris at Advantage Financial Solutions says: “Every time we apply for a fixed rate for a customer, within no time it’s cheaper elsewhere. I am on applicatio­n six for the same client in a bid to get them the best deal, which must be a personal record since I started advising in 2008.”

There was a very scary period when it seemed that anyone at the end of a fixed rate mortgage deal was facing seriously expensive payments just to stay in their house. This already looks like it will be manageable, that competitiv­e banks operating in a fluid market for finance will once again fight for our custom.

Brokers say they expect mortgage rates to keep falling, so our biggest problem will be locking in to a deal too soon and missing out on a cheaper one later.

This doesn’t sound like a staid economic establishm­ent bent on underminin­g ideas it doesn’t like. It sounds like a competitiv­e market that works just fine as long as the people at the top are sensible.

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