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Changes in social behavior and impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic on regional housing markets: Independence and risk

I-Chun Tsai

Journal of Behavioral and Experimental Finance, 2022, vol. 35, issue C

Abstract: This paper explores changes in social behavior since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic, which are characterized by reduction in relocation, mobility, and community engagement, and how the correlations between regional housing markets are affected by these changes. Because changes in mobility and engagement are the most apparent in large cities, the present study calculates the independence indicator of regional housing markets in the 50 largest metropolitan statistical areas (MSAs) in the United States and determines their relationship with Mobility and Engagement Index values. The empirical results show that as mobility and community engagement decline in a certain area, housing market fluctuations become more independent, indicating correlations between regional housing markets in the US might decrease after the COVID-19 outbreak. This paper also finds that there are more MSAs having significantly decreased in volatility since the outbreak of the pandemic. This paper provides evidence indicating that housing markets may be impacted differently by the COVID-19 pandemic than other asset markets, particularly stock markets. Changes in mobility and engagement can be used as an indicator to assess whether the correlation between regional housing markets would decline, which means that, compared with financial instruments, more factors from real aspects need to be considered when determining the changes in real estate affected by the epidemic.

Keywords: The COVID-19 outbreak; Changes in social behavior; Mobility and engagement; Regional housing markets; Housing market fluctuations (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Date: 2022
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Persistent link: https://EconPapers.repec.org/RePEc:eee:beexfi:v:35:y:2022:i:c:s2214635022000454

DOI: 10.1016/j.jbef.2022.100698

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