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Secure Trust Bank to cease new residential mortgage lending

U.K.-based Secure Trust Bank PLC is tempering the growth of its residential mortgage business amid tough competition in the market.

"During the second half of 2018, market pressures and competition intensified as evidenced by increasing Loan to Value metrics and lower new net lending margins," the bank said in a Jan. 16 statement.

As a result, Secure Trust Bank said it plans to halt new residential mortgage business origination "until conditions become more favorable," adding that the move is not expected to have a material impact on its 2018 and 2019 earnings.

Its full-year 2018 results are expected to be in line with the management and market expectations, the bank noted. It stressed, however, that its loan portfolio remains "appropriately positioned" for the current market conditions, and that the asset's short duration meant that the bank can "react quickly to both opportunities and threats."

The lender said it is progressing with plans to offer a broader range of motor finance products in the prime end of the market.