Posted on December 8, 2016 by iMFdirect
By Hites Ahir and Prakash Loungani
Versions in: عربي (Arabic), 中文 (Chinese), Français (French), 日本語 (Japanese), Русский (Russian), and Español (Spanish)
During 2007-08, house prices in several countries collapsed, marking the onset of a global financial crisis. The IMF’s Global House Price Index, a simple average of real house prices for 57 countries, is now almost back to its level before the crisis (Chart 1). Is it time to worry again about a global fall in house prices? Continue reading
Filed under: Advanced Economies, China, Europe, growth, housing, International Monetary Fund | Tagged: advanced economies, boom-bust cycle, China, Europe, Global House Price Index, house prices, housing, housing market, IMF, iMFdirect blog, Min Zhu, population growth | Leave a comment »
Posted on February 1, 2016 by iMFdirect
Housing is on everyone’s mind. The collapse of housing bubbles can be very costly.
- In Japan, house prices rose by about 40 percent during the mid-1980s; the collapse was followed by a ‘lost decade’ in which incomes did not grow and house prices fell by over 40 percent.
- In the United States, house prices increased by about 30 percent between 2001 and 2006; their collapse was followed by the global financial crisis.
Filed under: China, Financial Crisis, housing, IMF, International Monetary Fund, Japan, U.S. | Tagged: China, global financial crisis, housing, housing market, IMF, International Monetary Fund, Japan, research, United States | Leave a comment »
Posted on March 9, 2015 by iMFdirect
By Hamid Faruqee and Andrea Pescatori
(Version in Français)
In the aftermath of the 2008 financial crisis, Canada’s financial system held up remarkably well—making it the envy of its Group of Seven peers. This relative resilience was particularly impressive considering its most important trading and financial partner, the United States, was the epicenter of the crisis.
Part of Canada’s success story lies in the fact that its banking system is dominated by a handful of large players who are well capitalized and have safe, conservative, and profitable business models concentrated in mortgage lending—much of it covered by mortgage insurance and backstopped by the federal government. Notwithstanding such an enviable record and sound financial system, we need to keep an eye on certain financial risks.
Filed under: Advanced Economies, Economic outlook, Economic research, Finance, Financial Crisis, G-20, growth, IMF, International Monetary Fund, Investment | Tagged: bank lending, Canada, financial crisis, house prices, housing, housing market, loan-to-value ratio, mortgages, OECD, oil prices, trade, U.S. | 2 Comments »
Posted on August 1, 2013 by iMFdirect
By Jarkko Turunen
(Version in Español)
A year ago, we were very concerned about lingering weakness in the U.S. housing market, which we saw as a major obstacle to the economic recovery.
But what a difference a year makes! As our latest report on the U.S. economy points out, the housing market recovery has been stronger than expected, and is providing a significant boost to private domestic demand and economic growth.
What has changed in the last 12 months? House prices have rebounded sharply and are currently about 7-12 percent above their level a year ago. Home sales increased by more than 15 percent over the same time period. Thanks to higher house prices and the positive effects of government housing finance programs, fewer homeowners are “underwater” (owe more on their mortgages than their houses are worth) or are behind on their mortgage payments, and fewer houses are entering foreclosure.
Filed under: Advanced Economies, Economic Crisis, Economic research, Employment, Finance, growth, IMF, International Monetary Fund, Investment, Public debt | Tagged: economic growth, Federal Reserve, house prices, housing, housing indicators, housing market, IMF, iMFdirect, International Monetary Fund, monetary policy, mortgages, U.S., United States | Leave a comment »
Posted on August 3, 2012 by iMFdirect
By Nicolás Eyzaguirre
After three and a half demanding and fulfilling years at the International Monetary Fund, I’ve had a chance to see, up close, countries trying to cope with the global economy in the same way a cook might operate a blender without the lid on—carefully, while creating as little mess as possible.
As I step down from my position as Director of the IMF’s Western Hemisphere Department, I would like to share some reflections on one of the central issues facing many countries—adjustment under fixed exchange rates. It goes without saying that these reflect a personal and not an institutional view.
A lot of ink has been spent over the question of why you would lend money to a country trying to bring down its government debt and deficit. The answer is simple: to give the reforms needed to make economies competitive again time to kick in.
In the old days, fixed exchange rates were the norm rather than the exception. A body of literature and a wealth of country experience have accumulated on how to adjust under such exchange rate regimes, mostly in emerging economies. The expression “adjustment and financing” came to summarize what economies should do when faced with severe funding constraints brought on by high borrowing costs for government debt in financial markets.
Filed under: Advanced Economies, Economic Crisis, Economic research, Emerging Markets, Europe, Finance, IMF, International Monetary Fund, Latin America, Politics, Public debt | Tagged: borrowing, competitiveness, devaluation, exchange rates, exports, housing, Labor, Nicolás Eyzaguirre, private sector, Western Hemisphere Department | 4 Comments »
Posted on July 16, 2012 by iMFdirect
By Olivier Blanchard
(Versions in عربي, 中文, Español, Français, Русский, 日本語)
The global recovery continues, but the recovery is weak; indeed a bit weaker than we forecast in April.
In the Euro zone, growth is close to zero, reflecting positive but low growth in the core countries, and negative growth in most periphery countries. In the United States, growth is positive, but too low to make a serious dent to unemployment.
Growth has also slowed in major emerging economies, from China to India and Brazil.
Downside risks, coming primarily from Europe, have increased.
Let me develop these themes in turn.
Filed under: Advanced Economies, Economic Crisis, Economic outlook, Economic research, Emerging Markets, Employment, Europe, Fiscal policy, growth, IMF, International Monetary Fund | Tagged: bank recapitalization, banks, Brazil, capital flows, China, economic policy, economic recovery, euro zone, Europe, exproters, financial markets, fiscal cliff, fiscal consolidation, France, Germany, government debts and deficits, growth, housing, IMF, iMFdirect blog, India, International Monetary Fund, Italy, loans, non-performing loans, Olivier Blanchard, Spain, structural reforms, unemployment, United States, WEO, World Economic Outlook | 10 Comments »
Posted on May 10, 2012 by iMFdirect
By Luis Cubeddu, Camilo E. Tovar, and Evridiki Tsounta
(Version in Español)
Housing construction projects are sprouting up across much of Latin America and mortgage credit is also growing very fast. Does this sound familiar? It should!
Easy external financing conditions and high commodity prices have led to important improvements in living standards and credit deepening in many countries of the region over the past decade. The credit expansion has been particularly impressive in the mortgage sector, where legal reforms and government subsidies have also played a role.
Although mortgage credit in Latin American countries is relatively low by international standards —at just 7 percent of GDP versus over 20 percent in emerging Asia and over 65 percent in the United States—it has grown at an impressive annual average real rate of 14 percent since 2003, with Brazil leading the pack. Home prices have also risen sharply over this period, particularly in countries where mortgage credit has expanded the fastest (for more details see Chapter 5 in our latest Western Hemisphere Regional Economic Outlook).
So, are housing vulnerabilities emerging?
Filed under: Economic Crisis, Economic outlook, Economic research, Employment, Finance, Financial Crisis, Financial regulation, growth, Inequality, International Monetary Fund, Latin America, Public debt | Tagged: Brazil, Camilo E. Tovar, Chile, Colombia, credit, Evridiki Tsounta, housing, housing market, Luis Cubeddu, Mexico, Minha Casa, Minha Vida, Peru, Uruguay | 5 Comments »