Market-beating growth in mortgages and savings helped Virgin Money deliver its first underlying profit since its takeover of Northern Rock today.

The bank, which bought the former failed lender from the government for an initial £820 million in 2011, made an underlying profit of £53.4 million, against losses of £2.5 million a year earlier.

Virgin said retail savings balances were up 17% to £21.1 billion - in excess of market growth of 5% - while mortgage balances rose 17% to £19.6 billion, compared with market growth of 1%.

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The group also reported progress in its credit cards business after it completed the acquisition of £1 billion of Virgin Money credit cards from its partner MBNA.