March 22, 2018 / 11:30 AM / a year ago

Irish mortgage arrears fell to 6.6 percent at end of 2017

DUBLIN, March 22 (Reuters) - The number of Irish homeowners in arrears for more than 90 days fell to 6.6 percent at the end of 2017 from 6.9 percent three months earlier, central bank data showed on Thursday, the fastest quarterly drop in two years.

Arrears began falling from a peak of 12.9 percent in 2013, in line with an economic recovery, but the pace had slowed and stood at 7.4 percent a year ago.

The number of accounts in arrears over 720 days declined by 8.5 percent to just under 29,000 at the end of December, representing more than half of homeowners who have missed three or more payments. The central bank said quarterly changes were affected by changes in methodology at one institution.

Reporting by Padraic Halpin, editing by Larry King

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