§ Mr. Sedgemore
asked the Chancellor of the Exchequer what effect the Budget has had on building society funds; if the Wessex Permanent Building Society has informed him that it is raising its rate to 11¾ per cent.; if he will list those societies which have intimated that they do not wish to use the recent offer of Government help to keep interest down; and if he will make a statement.
§ Mr. Dell
The net inflow of funds to building societies has shown a substantial improvement since the Budget; this together with the short-term loan facility arranged by the Government has enabled the societies to offer a welcome increase in commitments for new mortgages. 163 of the 344 eligible building societies, representing 87 per cent. of the assets of those eligible, have accepted some loan assistance, and this carries the obligation not to announce an increase in mortgage rates for a month after acceptance. The Wessex Permanent Building Society was not one of these, and had no obligation to report to the Government any proposed change in mortgage interest rates.