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Nationwide’s gross lending up 44%

Nationwide increased its gross lending by 44 per cent in the twelve months to April 4, 2012, to reach £18.4bn, up from £12.8bn in 2011.

It helped over 24,000 first-time buyers during the year, a 9 per cent increase on last year .

Group residential mortgage accounts more than three months in arrears were 0.73 per cent, also slightly down from 0.77 per cent in 2011.

It has maintained its Base Mortgage Rate pledge, which means many borrowers have reverted to a rate capped at 2 per cent above the Bank of England’s 0.5 per cent base rate.

The lender estimates this has cost it £750m so far, meaning each customer has benefited by around £1,000.

The lender also increased its buy-to-let lending to £4.4bn during the year, up from £3bn in 2011.

Overall, Nationwide’s underlying profits rose by 10 per cent to £304m in the year.

Its results were hit by a £103m charge for complaints relating to the mis-selling of PPI. It has seen complaints about PPI quadruple in the last six months.

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