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The housing market, household portfolios and the German consumer

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  • Muellbauer, John
  • Geiger, Felix
  • Rupprecht, Manuel

Abstract

House price booms in Anglo-Saxon economies and their collapse were an important part of the financial accelerator via consumption, construction and the banking system. This paper examines links for Germany between household portfolios, income and consumption in a six-equation system, for 1980-2012 data, for consumption, house prices, consumer credit, housing loans, liquid assets and permanent income with latent variables representing the shifts in the availability of the two types of credit. We find evidence of well specified consumption and house price functions and that Germany differs greatly from the Anglo-Saxon economies: rising house prices do not translate into higher consumer spending. This suggests that the transmission of monetary policy via asset prices, in particular house prices, on consumption is likely to be less effective, and any financial accelerator weaker, in Germany than in the US or the UK. There is little evidence of overvaluation of German house prices by 2012. JEL Classification: E21, E27, E44, E51, E58

Suggested Citation

  • Muellbauer, John & Geiger, Felix & Rupprecht, Manuel, 2016. "The housing market, household portfolios and the German consumer," Working Paper Series 1904, European Central Bank.
  • Handle: RePEc:ecb:ecbwps:20161904
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    3. Mattias Vermeiren, 2017. "One-size-fits-some! Capitalist diversity, sectoral interests and monetary policy in the euro area," Review of International Political Economy, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 24(6), pages 929-957, November.
    4. Marc Peter Radke & Manuel Rupprecht, 2021. "Household Wealth: Low-Yielding and Poorly Structured?," Journal of Risk and Financial Management, MDPI, Open Access Journal, vol. 14(3), pages 1-40, March.
    5. John Muellbauer, 2018. "Housing, Debt and the Economy: A Tale of Two Countries," National Institute Economic Review, National Institute of Economic and Social Research, vol. 245(1), pages 20-33, August.
    6. Muellbauer, John, 2016. "Macroeconomics and Consumption," CEPR Discussion Papers 11588, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
    7. David F Hendry & John N J Muellbauer, 2018. "The future of macroeconomics: macro theory and models at the Bank of England," Oxford Review of Economic Policy, Oxford University Press, vol. 34(1-2), pages 287-328.
    8. Gabe Jacob de Bondt & Arne Gieseck & Zivile Zekaite, 2020. "Thick modelling income and wealth effects: a forecast application to euro area private consumption," Empirical Economics, Springer, vol. 58(1), pages 257-286, January.
    9. Stefanie Braun, 2021. "Effects of Preferential Tax Treatment on German Homeownership," Working Papers 209, Bavarian Graduate Program in Economics (BGPE).
    10. Christophe Blot & Jérôme Creel & Paul Hubert, 2019. "Challenges ahead for EMU monetary policy," Sciences Po publications info:hdl:2441/5udjblpuik8, Sciences Po.
    11. Unger, Robert, 2017. "Asymmetric credit growth and current account imbalances in the euro area," Journal of International Money and Finance, Elsevier, vol. 73(PB), pages 435-451.
    12. Hiller, Norbert & Lerbs, Oliver W., 2016. "Aging and urban house prices," Regional Science and Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 60(C), pages 276-291.
    13. Ph. Du Caju & M. Emiris & Ch. Piette & M.-D. Zachary, 2018. "Shedding new light on the mortgage debt of households in Belgium," Economic Review, National Bank of Belgium, issue i, pages 97-114, June.
    14. Riccardo De Bonis & Danilo Liberati & John Muellbauer & Concetta Rondinelli, 2020. "Consumption and wealth: new evidence from Italy," Temi di discussione (Economic working papers) 1304, Bank of Italy, Economic Research and International Relations Area.
    15. John Muellbauer & Pierre St-Amant & David Williams, 2015. "Credit Conditions and Consumption, House Prices and Debt: What Makes Canada Different?," Staff Working Papers 15-40, Bank of Canada.
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    17. Kajuth, Florian, 2020. "The German housing market cycle: Answers to FAQs," Discussion Papers 20/2020, Deutsche Bundesbank.
    18. Manuel Rupprecht, 2020. "Income and wealth of euro area households in times of ultra-loose monetary policy: stylised facts from new national and financial accounts data," Empirica, Springer;Austrian Institute for Economic Research;Austrian Economic Association, vol. 47(2), pages 281-302, May.

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    More about this item

    Keywords

    consumption; credit conditions; credit market liberalization; household debt; housing collateral; monetary transmission;
    All these keywords.

    JEL classification:

    • E21 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Consumption, Saving, Production, Employment, and Investment - - - Consumption; Saving; Wealth
    • E27 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Consumption, Saving, Production, Employment, and Investment - - - Forecasting and Simulation: Models and Applications
    • E44 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Money and Interest Rates - - - Financial Markets and the Macroeconomy
    • E51 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Monetary Policy, Central Banking, and the Supply of Money and Credit - - - Money Supply; Credit; Money Multipliers
    • E58 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Monetary Policy, Central Banking, and the Supply of Money and Credit - - - Central Banks and Their Policies

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