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High street banks increase lending to industry

Lending to construction businesses by high street banks rose for the first time in three months in November 2011, according to statistics from the British Bankers Association.

In November, lending was up by £162 million, compared to a £107m drop in October. But a six month average shows lending down by £258m, according to the latest figures.

By sub-sector, lending to commerical building construction rose by £34m, the first rise since July 2011. In contrast, lending to construction of domestic buildings was down by £59m in November, and by £30m for civil engineering.

The £162m rise in November is the highest rise since comparable figures for construction were compiled from February 2011. The lowest point during that time was in June 2011, when lending was down by £614m.