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A re-examination of housing bubbles: Evidence from European countries

I-Chun Tsai and Che-Chun Lin

Economic Systems, 2022, vol. 46, issue 2

Abstract: This study uses data from six Eurozone countries and the United Kingdom between 1980Q1 and 2018Q4 to examine whether these countries had housing bubbles during the observed period. Whereas typical studies make strictly limited assumptions regarding interest rates, we make an unconventional argument for the necessity of testing the integration relationship between the price–rent ratio and the interest rate reciprocal to determine the existence of housing bubbles. To verify this study’s proposition, two housing bubble indicators were adopted to dynamically examine periods of housing bubbles in European countries by using a series of individual countries and panel data from Eurozone countries. According to the empirical results for individual countries, although the price–rent ratio indicates the occurrence of housing booms in the targeted countries, the evidence for housing bubbles is unclear. The dynamic bubble indicator revealed that housing bubbles occurred in France and Ireland within a short period in 1993Q3 and 2000Q2, respectively. Spain experienced two short-term housing bubbles in 1990Q1 and 2015Q1. The short-term bubbles signify that the housing markets were efficient. Once the price–rent ratio failed to converge toward the nominal interest rate, market traders’ rational behavior can immediately correct the short-term market divergence. The panel data of the Eurozone countries also reveals that simply using the price–rent ratio for examination may underestimate the correction of the housing markets. In conclusion, the results of this study demonstrate the importance of the interest rate in controlling the housing market.

Keywords: Housing bubbles; Housing booms; Price-rent ratio; Housing market correction; European housing markets (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Date: 2022
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DOI: 10.1016/j.ecosys.2022.100971

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Handle: RePEc:eee:ecosys:v:46:y:2022:i:2:s0939362522000334