Britain's bank payments system returned to operation after a suspension for most of the day that held up fund transfers and delayed house purchases.

The Bank of England had halted transactions via its Real Time Gross Settlement system after uncovering a fault during routine maintenance at the weekend. The system handles 575 billion pounds ($928 billion) of daily payments between the country's banks, including the same-day electronic funds transfers used by homebuyers.

The BOE said in a statement it will extend operational hours until 8:00 p.m. London time "to maximize the opportunity for settlement."

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