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Wednesday, June 08, 2011

China: Another Year, Another Prediction of a Housing Bust

by Calculated Risk on 6/08/2011 08:54:00 PM

From the WSJ: The Great Property Bubble of China May Be Popping

Already, in nine major cities tracked by Rosealea Yao, an analyst at market-research firm Dragonomics, real-estate prices fell 4.9% in April from a year earlier. Last year, prices in those nine cities rose 21.5%; in 2009, the increase was about 10%, as China started to recover from the global economic crisis, with much steeper increases toward the end of that year.
If the Chinese housing market slows faster than people had expected, the impact would be felt in a number of markets that export heavily to China.
It is hard to tell what is happening in China - as I've mentioned over the years, at least from what we can tell, the amount of leverage in China is significant less than what we saw in the U.S. during the bubble (residential lending wasn't as crazy). So even if house prices dropped significantly, there wouldn't be as many homeowners with negative equity. Hopefully Professor Pettis will comment on this story!

CoreLogic House Price Graph, Real Prices, and Prices and Month-of-Supply