The Australian housing bubble and the soft landing

[Australia] kept on raising [interest] rates the next year, and officials talked loudly about the threat of housing prices getting too high.  The most populous Australian state even imposed a special tax on investment properties to discourage real-estate speculation.  By 2004, the market peaked after more than two years of 14% or greater annual growth.  The most recent data suggest Australia’s home prices have changed little over the past year, and have fallen slightly in the two biggest cities, Sydney and Melbourne.

…on the whole the nation’s economy is healthy.  Unemployment is close to a 30-year low and incomes continue to rise.  The Australian Stock Exchange hit a high in mid-June.  Many economists and home buyers alike believe a reservoir of demand will help avoid a sudden crash in home prices.

That is from The Wall Street Journal, 14 July 2005.  I have noticed that even a middling quality home, an hour outside of Sydney, can be listed at U.S. $600,000 or higher.


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