U.K. Home Price Decline News Drives Builder Stock Down

Newcastle–Shares of Newcastle-based Barratt Developments Plc–Britain’s second-biggest homebuilder by volume–fell by 6.1 percent in London trading after HBOS Plc, the U.K.’s biggest mortgage lender, said Thursday that home prices showed their biggest drop since 1992 last month, Bloomberg reports.Other builders also saw declines. Bellway Plc fell as much as 4 percent; Taylor Wimpey Plc dropped 3.8 percent. According to HBOS, the average home price fell 2.5 percent to 191,556 pounds ($379,000) from February. In the first quarter of the year, home prices dropped 1 percent compared with the three months prior. Increased lending costs also have caused all large U.K. lenders to stop 100 percent mortgage offers, Bloomberg said.