Mortgage approvals in the UK have dropped to their lowest level since November 2014, according to figures for the month of August published by the Bank of England.

Giving details on Thursday (29 September), the British central bank said mortgage approvals for house purchases came in at 60,058 last month, down from 60,925 in July, pointing to a slowdown of the housing market in the wake of the UK's vote to leave the European Union on 23 June.

According to latest BoE forecasts, monthly mortgage approvals are expected to fall to 56,000 in the second half of 2016; the lowest on record since the first quarter of 2013.

However, the bank's figures also pointed to unsecured lending to consumers, via credit cards and personal loans, expanding at a rate close to recent 10-year highs.

Overall, consumer credit grew by £1.574bn ($2.05bn), versus market expectations of £1.4bn via a Reuters' poll.

Howard Archer, chief UK and European economist at IHS Markit, said consumers were clearly prepared to continue borrowing and spending in August, and it is notable that confidence has recovered markedly after slumping in July in the immediate aftermath of the Brexit vote.

"However, we suspect that the fundamentals for consumers will become less favourable over the coming months with purchasing power likely diminishing and the labour market softening," Archer added.

On a three-month basis, unsecured lending grew at an annualised rate of 10.4%, the same as in July and not far off a previous peak set shortly before the referendum.