Tuesday, May 10, 2005

UK Housing Market At "Impass"

Home prices in the UK are mixed with some indicators pointing up and some down. But the number of sales was decidedly down. "The Land Registry said 159,116 properties changed hands during the first three months of the year, 35 per cent down on the 243,914 sold during the same period of 2004."

"A similar picture was seen in London, with sales in the capital falling by 36 per cent to just 20,788, as the housing market slowed down. In some boroughs the number of transactions halved, with the steepest falls seen in sales of pricey detached homes."

"The fall in activity appeared to feed through to prices, with house price inflation slowing to a three-year low of 10.27 per cent, well down from the peak of 22.2 per cent at the end of 2002."

"Economic forecast group Capital Economics recently said that the UK housing market was at an "impasse", with buyers no longer willing, or able, to meet asking prices and sellers reluctant to lower them."


At 7:52 AM, Blogger goleta said...

With baby boomers retiring, we're going to see a health care bubble. Companies offer good products or services to the aging population will see their stocks skyrocket in the near future. You can't buy time with money, but boomers will sell homes to get the best health care they can get. Sellers who still live in the illusion and have their money all locked up in the bubble are missing the next big wave.

At 7:55 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Some interesting Brit commentary...

A newlywed couple completely in over their heads:


Brti banks now being investigated for "'dodgy' lending practices":


At 10:47 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

After the real estate slowdown comes the retail sales slowdown, as the feeling of prosperity, and the source of spending funds (refinancing) dries up.

This Bloomburg piece is about how it is happening now in the UK.

"U.K. Retail Sales Plunge Most in at Least 10 Years - Bloomberg (5/10/2005 5:34 AM)"


I expect we'll see the same thing here as well sometime in the next 12 months. There is a basket of retail stocks traded under the symbol RTH in the US. They can be shorted, or you can buy puts on them as a possible way to play this.


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