Monday, January 30, 2012

Checking in on New Zealand's Bubble

Hope springs eternal.

New Zealand's long-term average is 78,000 property sales a year, but sales "dropped like a stone" from 100,000 to 50,000 after the market peaked in 2007.
Helm said the release of KiwiSaver funds was providing some buying stimulus, but the main reasons for the demand were continuing low interest rates and a return to 95 per cent bank mortgages.
"Since we bribed the market, it will stay afloat a little longer."

The Kiwisaver referred to here is a scheme where withdrawals from a work-based savings program can be subsidized up to $5,000 toward a first home purchase. And better yet, multiple parties with multiple subsidies can pool together on the purchase.
"Certainly there are hot spots around the country but that doesn't mean the market's overly buoyant or getting inflated and I think the Reserve Bank will be pleased to sense that is happening, because they must be worried about these low interest rates."
Nothing to see here. Go about your business.
"Back then 6 per cent of the housing stock turned over in a year and now it's 3.6 per cent.
"Whether that's a structural change or just a reflection of a really slow climb back after two recessions, only time will tell."
I really like how they've stretched the graph out sideways to make it look like a *doubling* in the index over five years is just a gentle rise. This is an index, inflation has been removed. Indexes typically should be flat, barring a structural change.

Related links:

BNZ Guidance On EUR500 Million 2015 Covered Bond, Swaps +1.25 Area

Pricier than expected
Fitch puts Australia banks on review for possible downgrade over funding costs

Q+A-Will a big exposure to mortgages hurt Australian banks?
Mortgages drive overall loan growth at National Australia Bank (NAB.AX), Commonwealth Bank of Australia (CBA.AX), Westpac (WBC.AX) and Australia and New Zealand Banking Group (ANZ.AX).

Between them, they have lent A$1.1 trillion worth of home loans, the equivalent of 60 percent of their loan books. This compares with about 15 percent among U.S. and UK banks, but that is an understated exposure as it excludes securitised mortgages.

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