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Are US real house prices stationary? New evidence from univariate and panel data

Zhang Jing (), Robert de Jong and Donald Haurin ()
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Zhang Jing: ECCA, Moody’s Analytics, 121 N Walnut St, West Chester, PA 19380, USA

Studies in Nonlinear Dynamics & Econometrics, 2016, vol. 20, issue 1, 1-18

Abstract: Many papers in the housing literature treat the intertemporal evolution of the logarithm of US real house prices as a unit root process. They also study the cointegration relationship among the logarithm of real house prices and fundamental economic variables such as income and they apply an error correction specification for modeling and forecasting real house prices. This paper argues that the logarithm of US real house price is not a unit root process. Instead, the evidence from a 120-year national dataset and metro area level and state level panel data sets supports the notion that US house prices are trend stationary. One result of this conclusion is that the validity of analyses of US house prices based on cointegration and error correction models needs to be reconsidered.

Date: 2016
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