Reports of the Week
Estonia: the number of housing transactions with local property is on the rise. Sweden: prices for apartments in Stockholm and Gothenburg have reached their record-highs. China: the history's largest financial bubble is probably inflating on the country's property market.
Estonia: in Q1 2010, the number of transactions with Estonian housing has soared by
31.3%, compared to the same period last year. In Tallinn, where roughly a half of all transactions concluded over January-March were inked, sales have skyrocketed by 46.7%, year-on-year.
Sweden: in quarterly calculations, over Q1, the median apartment prices in Stockholm and Gothenburg have increased by 3% and amounted to €4,900 per a sq. m and €3,300 per a sq. m, respectively, thus setting a new record.
Spain: over Q1 2009, Spanish housing has depreciated by 1.7% on the average. During the same period of 2009 prices have decreased by 3%, compared with the first three months of 2008. Spanish home sales have surged by 7.2%, January-to-February.
Cyprus: the number of transactions with local property inked in March has increased by 9.4%, compared to February. In relation to March 2009, the indicator has soared by
36.6%. The quantity of transactions involving foreign buyers has also increased both in monthly and annual basis.
China: over March, local home prices have increased by 11.7%, compared to the same period of 2009. The figure has surged by 10.7% in February, while growing by 9.5% over January. An increase in prices has also been registered in monthly terms. A former economist of Morgan Stanley, Andy Xie, claims that the history's largest financial bubble has inflated on the Chinese market. According the expert, increasing the interest rates is the only possible way to deflate the bubble.
Canada: over February, prices for primary residential property in the country have climbed up by 0.1%, compared to the preceding month. In relation to January 2009, the figure has increased by 0.9%.
United States: governmental program aimed on assisting those mortgage borrowers in arrears on their loans and threatened by foreclosure of their housing does not seem to be bringing any significant results. Such are the conclusions of the government commission that oversees the program. According to experts, the program, which cost the US government
$50 billion, will be able to aid 1 million homeowners. The authorities were expecting the number of "rescued" citizens to reach 4 million.
New Zealand: the aggregative value of residential properties sold in the country over this March has soared by 27.6%, compared to the preceding month. Over the same period, the property sales have also increased by 22.5%.
Belgium: A surge of lettings activity has been registered on the Brussels office property market. In Q1 2010, the total number of office space leased in the city has soared by 152% compared with the same period last year. The indicator has exceeded quarterly average level of the last five years by 8%. Experts claim that major tenants and investors have already returned to the Brussels office market.
Every day the news on numerous predictions of housing prices' dynamics and the future development of the world property markets appear in the media. Some of them hit "the nail on the head" most of them, however, "muff a shot". A story, which has recently happened to one Australian lecturer, may turn out to be quite instructive for many forecasters.
In late 2008, Steve Keen, senior lecturer at the University of Western Sydney, has forecasted Australian housing prices to plummet by 40%. However, the strategist of the Macquarie Group company, Rory Robertson, has argued Keen's forecast, and offered a bet to the senior lecturer. The loser had to climb Australia's highest mountain - Kosciusko.
As of December 2009, the cost of local housing was already 13% higher than during the corresponding period of 2008. The positive price dynamics prevailed in 2010.
Last Thursday, the professor began his ascent. A man has to travel 225 km, the journey will take nine days.
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