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No Price Like Home: Global House Prices, 1870-2012

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  • Katharina Knoll
  • Moritz Schularick
  • Thomas Steger

Abstract

How have house prices evolved over the long run? This paper presents annual house prices for 14 advanced economies since 1870. We show that real house prices stayed constant from the nineteenth to the mid-twentieth century, but rose strongly and with substantial cross-country variation in the second half of the twentieth century. Land prices, not replacement costs, are the key to understanding the trajectory of house prices. Rising land prices explain about 80 percent of the global house price boom that has taken place since World War II. Our findings have implications for the evolution of wealth-to-income ratios, the growth effects of agglomeration, and the price elasticity of housing supply.

Suggested Citation

  • Katharina Knoll & Moritz Schularick & Thomas Steger, 2017. "No Price Like Home: Global House Prices, 1870-2012," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 107(2), pages 331-353, February.
  • Handle: RePEc:aea:aecrev:v:107:y:2017:i:2:p:331-53
    Note: DOI: 10.1257/aer.20150501
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    Cited by:

    1. Jordà, Òscar & Schularick, Moritz & Taylor, Alan M., 2015. "Leveraged bubbles," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 76(S), pages 1-20.
    2. Piazzesi, M. & Schneider, M., 2016. "Housing and Macroeconomics," Handbook of Macroeconomics, Elsevier.
    3. Jordà, Òscar & Schularick, Moritz & Taylor, Alan M., 2015. "Betting the house," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 96(S1), pages 2-18.
      • Òscar Jordà & Moritz Schularick & Alan M. Taylor, 2014. "Betting the House," NBER Chapters,in: NBER International Seminar on Macroeconomics 2014, pages 2-18 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    4. Kalkuhl, Matthias & Fernandez Milan, Blanca & Schwerhoff, Gregor & Jakob, Michael & Hahnen, Maren & Creutzig, Felix, 2017. "Fiscal Instruments for Sustainable Development: The Case of Land Taxes," MPRA Paper 78652, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    5. repec:eee:macchp:v2-1427 is not listed on IDEAS
    6. repec:bla:ecaffa:v:37:y:2017:i:2:p:254-270 is not listed on IDEAS
    7. Òscar Jordà & Moritz Schularick & Alan M. Taylor, 2017. "Macrofinancial History and the New Business Cycle Facts," NBER Macroeconomics Annual, University of Chicago Press, vol. 31(1), pages 213-263.
    8. Borri, Nicola & Reichlin, Pietro, 2018. "The housing cost disease," Journal of Economic Dynamics and Control, Elsevier, vol. 87(C), pages 106-123.
    9. Kuhn, Moritz & Schularick, Moritz & Steins, Ulrike I., 2018. "Income and Wealth Inequality in America, 1949-2016," Working Papers 9, Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis, Opportunity and Inclusive Growth Institute.
    10. Punzi, Maria Teresa, 2016. "Financial cycles and co-movements between the real economy, finance and asset price dynamics in large-scale crises," FinMaP-Working Papers 61, Collaborative EU Project FinMaP - Financial Distortions and Macroeconomic Performance: Expectations, Constraints and Interaction of Agents.
    11. Òscar Jordà & Katharina Knoll & Dmitry Kuvshinov & Moritz Schularick & Alan M. Taylor, 2017. "The Rate of Return on Everything, 1870–2015," NBER Working Papers 24112, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    12. Schünemann, Johannes & Trimborn, Timo, 2017. "Boosting taxes for boasting about houses: Status concerns in the housing market," ECON WPS - Vienna University of Technology Working Papers in Economic Theory and Policy 05/2017, Vienna University of Technology, Institute for Mathematical Methods in Economics, Research Group Economics (ECON).
    13. Grossmann, Volker & Schäfer, Andreas & Steger, Thomas & Fuchs, Benjamin, 2017. "Reversal of migration flows: A fresh look at the German reunification," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 109(C), pages 1-15.
    14. Strulik, Holger & Trimborn, Timo, 2014. "Natural disasters and macroeconomic performance: The role of residential investment," Center for European, Governance and Economic Development Research Discussion Papers 194, University of Goettingen, Department of Economics.
    15. Miles, David K & Sefton, James, 2017. "Houses across time and across place," CEPR Discussion Papers 12103, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
    16. Volker Grossmann & Thomas Steger, 2016. "Das House-Kapital: A Theory of Wealth-to-Income Ratios," CESifo Working Paper Series 5844, CESifo Group Munich.
    17. Naudé, Wim & Nagler, Paula, 2017. "Technological Innovation and Inclusive Growth in Germany," IZA Discussion Papers 11194, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
    18. Balcilar, Mehmet & Katzke, Nico & Gupta, Rangan, 2018. "Date-stamping US housing market explosivity," Economics - The Open-Access, Open-Assessment E-Journal, Kiel Institute for the World Economy (IfW), vol. 12, pages 1-33.
    19. Gray, Rowena, 2018. "Selection bias in historical housing data," QUCEH Working Paper Series 2018-01, Queen's University Belfast, Queen's University Centre for Economic History.
    20. Lu, J. & Teulings, C., 2016. "Falling Real Interest Rates, House Prices, and the Introduction of the Pill," Cambridge Working Papers in Economics 1662, Faculty of Economics, University of Cambridge.
    21. Paul, Pascal, 2017. "Historical Patterns of Inequality and Productivity around Financial Crises," Working Paper Series 2017-23, Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco.
    22. Daniel Kaufmann, 2016. "Is Deflation Costly After All? Evidence from Noisy Historical Data," KOF Working papers 16-421, KOF Swiss Economic Institute, ETH Zurich.
    23. repec:eee:ecolet:v:160:y:2017:i:c:p:82-85 is not listed on IDEAS
    24. Homburg, Stefan, 2017. "A Study in Monetary Macroeconomics," OUP Catalogue, Oxford University Press, number 9780198807537.

    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • C43 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Econometric and Statistical Methods: Special Topics - - - Index Numbers and Aggregation
    • N10 - Economic History - - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics; Industrial Structure; Growth; Fluctuations - - - General, International, or Comparative
    • N90 - Economic History - - Regional and Urban History - - - General, International, or Comparative
    • R31 - Urban, Rural, Regional, Real Estate, and Transportation Economics - - Real Estate Markets, Spatial Production Analysis, and Firm Location - - - Housing Supply and Markets

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