Lloyds Banking Group has retained its status as the largest mortgage lender, accounting for 30.3% of the market in 2008.
However, with the credit crisis taking its toll on all institutions, the group's gross mortgage lending dropped to £78 billion over the year, down from £102.5 billion in 2007.
In a year during which considerable consolidation took place within the banking sector, the Council of Mortgage Lenders revealed that in order to make comparison of figures for firms in 2008 and 2007 more meaningful, it had re-worked the data for the earlier year as if any mergers and acquisitions that took place in 2008 had occurred earlier.
The coming together of HBOS and Lloyds TSB (including Cheltenham & Gloucester) to form Lloyds Banking Group saw the largest and third largest lenders in 2007 join forces.
The second largest lender in 2007, Santander, also retained its position, having already acquired the Abbey brand and then taken over the mortgage book of the Alliance & Leicester in October last year.
Nationwide BS was in third place, followed by Barclays and then the Royal Bank of Scotland.
In terms of the market overall, gross lending totalled £261 billion, 28% lower than its peak of £364 billion in 2007. Meanwhile, difficulties in raising funding meant that specialist lenders saw their share of the market drop to just 2%, down from 7% a year earlier.
The CML said that it was an area of the market it would expect to shrink further while the current market conditions persist.
Meanwhile, it added the lending commitments enforced by the Government on the nationalised and part-nationalised banks suggest it is a sector that will grow further.
Further consolidations have also been predicted, something that is likely to leave an even larger market share in the hands of the largest firms.
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