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Societies warn of advantage to Rock

The Building Societies Association has written to the European Commission expressing concern that Northern Rock has an unfair competitive advantage due to its Government guarantee.

The BSA warns of the effect that Rock’s restructuring will have on the market and calls for further reassurances that the lender will not appear in best-buy savings tables.

This week saw Rock launch a new mortgage range. John Charcol senior technical manager Ray Boulger says the new range is not extremely competitive but some rates will be attractive for certain borrowers.

He says: “Whereas Northern Rock has been completely out of the market before, it looks like it is trying to ramp up its lending. Some deals are quite good and it is still doing its fully flexible fixed rates. To get the decent rates, borrowers must be on a fairly low loan to value.”

The range includes a residential purchase short-term flexible fixed rate from 6.39 per cent. It offers a free standard valuation and legals on all remortgages.

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