British house prices rebound in May: survey

LONDON, June 7, 2011 (AFP) - British house prices rose by 0.1 percent in May month-on-month after a plunge of 1.4 percent in April, data from a major home-loans provider showed on Tuesday.

However they slumped by 4.2 percent in May compared with 12 months earlier -- the largest annual drop in 19 months -- according to figures from mortgage lender Halifax.

"Low earnings growth, higher taxes and relatively high inflation are all putting pressure on household finances," Halifax housing economist Martin Ellis said in a statement.

"Confidence is also weak as a result of uncertainty about the economic and employment outlook. These factors are probably constraining housing demand and applying some downward pressure on prices."

Halifax, which is part of state-controlled Lloyds Banking Group (LBG), said the average house price in Britain stood at £160,519 (179,865 euros, $263,617) in May.

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