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Global Housing Watch

The Global Housing Watch tracks developments in housing markets across the world on a quarterly basis. It provides current data on house prices as well as metrics used to assess valuation in housing markets, such as house price‑to‑rent and house-price‑to‑income ratios.

Global Housing Watch Quarterly Update
July 2015

Globally, house prices continue a slow recovery. The Global House Price Index, an equally weighted average of real house prices in nearly 60 countries, inched up slowly during the past two years but has not yet returned to pre-crisis levels. Read more...

LTV and DTI Limits

Going Granular

There is increasing interest in loan-to-value (LTV) and debt-service-to-income (DTI) limits as many countries face a new round of rising house prices. Yet, very little is known on how these regulatory instruments work in practice. This paper contributes to fill this gap by looking closely at their use and effectiveness in six economiesBrazil, Hong Kong SAR, Korea, Malaysia, Poland, and Romania. Read more...

United States: Selected Issues

United States: Housing Finance

Comprehensive housing finance reform remains the largest piece of unfinished business in the United States. In particular, it is not clear when Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac will exit conservatorship and what an end point for a reformed housing finance system will look like. This creates not only fiscal but also financial risks. Read more...

Housing Finance and Real-Estate Booms: A Cross-Country Perspective

At least until the Great Recession, there was a widespread consensus for policies in support of mortgage markets. Many considered access to housing finance as essential to promoting home ownership, which in turn was seen as beneficial to social stability and, ultimately, economic growth. Then, a tension emerged between increasing access to housing finance and containing the dangers associated with fast-growing mortgage credit. A new IMF paper explores this conflict.

Working Paper: Understanding Residential Real Estate in China

China's residential real estate sector plays an important role in the economy and has been a key driver of growth. Since 2014 the sector has softened visibly, reflecting overbuilding across many cities. An orderly adjustment of the sector is welcome. The key questions are how severe the adjustment will be and how long it will last. Read more...

Belgium: Selected Issues

Belgium House Prices: Evolution and Risks

This paper analyses the risks of a rapid house price adjustment in Belgium and the potential repercussions for the Belgian economy. The paper argues that current house prices are closer to their equilibrium than simple historical ratios would suggest and that given the moderate overvaluation, a gradual and limited adjustment seems a plausible scenario.

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Last Updated: June 30, 2015

Global House Price Index

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House Prices Around the World

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Credit Growth Around the World

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House Price-to-Income Ratio

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House Price-to-Rent Ratio