LONDON, March 7 (Reuters) - British house prices rose at their slowest annual pace in nearly five years last month, figures from mortgage lender Halifax showed, the latest sign of weakening of the housing market as Britain approaches its departure from the European Union.
Halifax said on Wednesday that average house prices increased by 1.8 percent in the 12 months to February, slowing from growth of 2.2 percent in January and the weakest increase since March 2013.
However, the rise was faster than a forecast in a Reuters poll of economists for growth of 1.6 percent.
In monthly terms, prices rose by 0.4 percent in February from January, the first increase in three months, Halifax said.
Writing by William Schomberg Editing by Catherine Evans