Pandemic paradox: Global housing markets continued to surge strongly upwards during the year to Q2

2020-09-03 02:48 1904

BRISTOL, United Kingdom, Sept. 3, 2020 /PRNewswire/ -- In Global Property Guide's report on global housing markets, during the year to Q2 2020:

  • Surprisingly, global housing markets remained vibrant during the year to Q2 2020, especially in Europe, Canada and the US. Real house prices (i.e., prices adjusted for inflation) rose in 33 out of the 49 world's housing markets which have so far published housing statistics.
  • The more upbeat nominal figures, more familiar to the public, showed house price rises in 38 countries, and declines in only 11 countries.
  • This is happening despite transaction volumes suffering an enormous hit from lockdowns and travel restrictions associated with the COVID-19 outbreak.
  • The most likely explanation is lower interest rates. Many central banks compensated for weak economies through lower interest rates and quantitative easing.
  • Quarter-on-quarter figures during Q2 confirm the trend.
  • Strong house price surges have taken place in European countries, such as Turkey, Germany, Slovak Republic, Estonia, as well as Portugal.
  • Despite being the new epicentre of the coronavirus outbreak, the U.S. housing market remains surprisingly robust. The S&P/Case-Shiller seasonally-adjusted national home price index rose by 3.62% during the year to Q2 2020 (inflation-adjusted), an improvement from the previous year's 1.57% growth. The Federal Housing Finance Agency displayed an even more rosy picture (from the seller's perspective) with its seasonally-adjusted purchase-only U.S. house price index rising by 5.02% y-o-y in Q2 2020 (inflation-adjusted), up from the previous year's 3.34% growth and the biggest increase since Q4 2015.
  • Thirty-four of the 49 surveyed housing markets showed stronger momentum in Q2 2020 compared to the previous year. Momentum is a measure of the "change in the change"; simply put, momentum has increased if a property market has risen faster this year than last (or fallen less).

Recently, the International Monetary Fund (IMF) revised its 2020 forecast for the global economy to a contraction of 4.9%, down from its earlier projection of a 3% decline. The agency predicts that all regions of the world will experience negative growth this year. 

Despite the significant economic slowdown, recent trends suggest the rises in housing markets will continue. The boost to asset values as a result of quantitative easing appear to be outweighing the negative economic impact of the crisis.

The strongest housing markets in our survey during the year to Q2 2020 included: Turkey (+11.59%), Makati CBD, Philippines (+11.52%), Germany (+10.85%), Slovak Republic (+9.13%), and Estonia (+8.28%), using inflation-adjusted figures.

The biggest y-o-y house-price declines were in Egypt (-17%), Pakistan (-4.62%), Puerto Rico (-4.44%), Malta (-3.51%), and Dubai, UAE (-3.27%), again using inflation-adjusted figures.

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Source: Global Property Guide