Northern Rock, Britain’s fifth-largest mortgage lender, raised fears about a new surge in bad debts after reporting a doubling in the number of home repossessions and a 67% jump in provisions for unsecured loans in its half-year results yesterday. The Times. The Guardian. The Independent. Daily Telegraph

The Newcastle-based bank unveiled flat first-half pretax profits of £296.1m, missing market expectations, after being hit by the increased cost of borrowing in the wholesale market.

Northern Rock flagged up a slowdown in house-price inflation in the second half as it warned that rising interest rates will hit full-year profits.