Speculators and Middlemen: The Role of Flippers in the Housing Market
In thinly traded markets for heterogenous, durable goods, such as housing, intermediaries may play especially important roles. Using a unique micro-level dataset of housing transactions in Los Angeles from 1988-2008 and a novel research design, we identify and measure the importance of two very distinct types of intermediaries, also known as "flippers". The first type act as middlemen who quickly match sellers and buyers, operate throughout housing market cycles and earn above average returns when they buy and sell. The second type act as speculators who attempt to time markets by holding assets for longer periods of time, perform relatively poorly when buying and selling and are strongly associated with price instability in their targeted areas. The presence of these unsophisticated speculators and positive feedback trading contribute the first pieces of evidence from the housing market to a growing body of work in other financial markets that questions whether speculators always act to stabilize prices.
|Date of creation:||2011|
|Date of revision:|
|Contact details of provider:|| Postal: Department of Economics Duke University 213 Social Sciences Building Box 90097 Durham, NC 27708-0097|
Phone: (919) 660-1800
Fax: (919) 684-8974
Web page: http://econ.duke.edu/
When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:duk:dukeec:11-03. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.
For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Department of Economics Webmaster)
If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.
If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.
If the full references list an item that is present in RePEc, but the system did not link to it, you can help with this form.
If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.
Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.