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Brokers feel shunned by Government

Mortgage brokers are asking why the Government is not seeking their views on the liquidity crisis.

Speaking at the first of a series of Money Marketing round tables, Alexander Hall chief operating officer Andy Pratt, who also heads broking group Concordia, claimed brokers are often in the best position to advise on what is happening in the market.

This week, Gordon Brown held emergency talks with a number banks, including HBOS, HSBC, Abbey, Nationwide and Lloyds TSB to discuss solutions to the current crisis. But Pratt said Brown should be seeking the opinion of brokers at the coalface.

He said: “The broking community does not generally tend to get consulted or asked for its opinion on virtually any matters that happen in the mortgage world. I would put forward that we are prob- ably in the best position to see what is going on.”

“We are talking to numerous lenders about their concerns and talking to customers on an ongoing basis but nobody at the Government level ever seeks the opinion of brokers.”

Cobalt Capital partner Andy Montlake said: “The Government always seems to be pretty dismissive about brokers. They still have the perception that brokers are commission-hungry and that is it.”

Pratt questioned how much lenders were really lobbying for increased injections of funding into the market.

He said: “There has been a lot of talk about injecting more money and the definition of eligible collateral. I do not know to what extent lenders are lobbying for that because they are suffering service problems at the moment anyway so if funding were loosened up, the lenders that are active in the market might be worried about a snowball effect.”

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