Did the house price 'crash' start in April?

Fri, 12 Jun 2015  |  

The absolutely fabulous Corelogic house price series is showing falls in house prices. To be sure, the falls are from a staggeringly high base, but compared with the peak in the series in late April, house prices are down 1.9 per cent. What is interesting is where the price falls have been concentrated.

While each capital city had a different point for the recent price peak:

  • Melbourne prices are now down a not insignificant 4.0 per cent since April.
  • Sydney prices have eased by 2.2 per cent since the early May high.
  • Perth prices are 2.6 per cent down from their December 2014 peak.
  • Brisbane prices are off a more moderate 0.7 per cent while Adelaide prices, well here’s a shock, have reached a new high, having generally lagged the boom cities for the last few years.

It would be wrong to be excited about a modest drop in house prices for a couple of months after such a strong and unrelenting rise in recent years. But the Corelogic data is telling me that the house price boom is almost certainly over. The debate will soon start to shift about what sort of price drop we are likely to see.

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The recent house price data from Corelogic are showing further falls in house prices.

The falls are, disconcertingly, most evident in Sydney where prices have dropped 0.5 per cent so far in January, which brings the aggregate fall since the September 2017 peak to a chunky 2.9 per cent. This means that for a $1 million property in September, the value has fallen $29,000 in just 4 months.

The house price weakness is not confined to Sydney.

In Melbourne, the Corelogic data shows house prices topping-out. Prices are down 0.3 per cent from the December 2017 peak which, to be sure, is not a large decline after the stunning increases of previous years, but a fall it is.

I'm out of the hammock to look at some facts about Australia's labour market

Thu, 18 Jan 2018

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This is good news, to be sure, but how good is it really? What is the context for this increase in employment and how is Australia going in an ever vibrant and dynamic global economy?

Of some concern, Australia’s unemployment rate remains at 5.5 per cent – it actually ticked up from 5.4 per cent the prior month. Interestingly, and something less favourable, is the fact that the unemployment rate has been below 5.5 per cent for just two months (October and November 2017) in the last four and half years. Where is that 5 per cent or lower full-employment target everyone reckons we are near?

What’s more interesting, and a sign of the policy sloth that Australia is enduring at the moment, is that around the world, unemployment rates are falling and are impressively low.

Sure each country will have its quirks but have a look at our 5.5 per cent against these countries.