HC Deb 14 May 1959 vol 605 c1406
14. Mr. Lipton

asked the Chancellor of the Exchequer what complaints he has received since the beginning of 1959 about the excessive rates of mortgage interest charged by building societies and what replies he has made.

Mr. Erroll

The Treasury has received about a dozen complaints about the rate of interest charged on building society mortgages. The reply has been that the rate. of interest on mortgages must re- main a matter for settlement between a society and its borrowers.

Mr. Lipton

In spite of today's announcement of a cut, possibly prompted by this Question on the Order Paper, is not it a fact that, with one or two honourable exceptions, the building societies have been too greedy for too long, very quick to put up the rates but very slow to bring them down? Is not it, therefore. a matter for consideration that, if the building societies want trustee status, the Government should have some say in deciding what the interest rates should be? At present the building societies are complete dictators in this respect.

Mr. Erroll

So far from their being complete dictators, there is a large unsatisfied demand for loans from building societies.

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