- Secure Trust Bank said it had decided to cease originating new residential mortgages until market conditions became more favourable.

The lender said competition had intensified since it warned last year of pricing pressures, with loan-to-value ratios increasing and lending margins shrinking.

Any changes in the business that may arise from the move, following a conclusion of the consultation period with staff affected, were not expected to have a material impact on 2018 and 2019 earnings, the company said.

Secure Trust Bank said it expected to post a full-year result in line with market expectations after it traded 'strongly' on the final period of 2018.

Customer numbers and associated retail finance, motor finance, mortgages and SME lending balances continued to grow, with customer lending balances exceeding £2bn for the first time.

'Given the heightened economic and political uncertainty the group continues to be selective in respect of new lending activities,' the company said.

'The strategic repositioning of the group towards lower risk lending across a focused group of attractive market segments continued to drive profit growth and improve the credit quality of new customer loan originations.'

'The legacy subprime motor portfolio has, as expected, been run-down to immaterial levels and the resulting shift in the portfolio mix has driven the expected significant reduction in impairments.'

'The group is progressing plans to offer a broader range of motor finance products in the prime end of the market.'

At 9:45am: [LON:STB] Secure Trust Bank PLC share price was +30p at 1212.5p

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