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Aussie house price moves mirror UK

The housing markets in Australia and the UK continue to slow, having both witnessed substantial house price booms over the past decade, the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors says. House prices have risen 122% in Australia and 170% in the UK since 1996 Q2. In the second quarter, house price inflation in Australia went negative for the first time since the first quarter of 1996. The slowdown has been abrupt. It was only 18 months ago that prices were rising at an annual rate of 19%. The situation in the UK is similar, with prices rising at an annual rate of 25% at the end of 2002. Now the annual rate of increase has fallen to 4% according to ODPM statistics for July. Prices have stagnated for the past three quarters. But the experience of Australia suggests that the UK does not face a substantial drop in prices.

Meanwhile, the upswing in US house prices continues to gather pace with prices nationwide 13.4% higher in Q2 than they were this time last year, the fastest increase ever recorded. There are now 25 US states in which prices are rising above 10% per year, eight of which are recording rises of above 20%.


Late payers named and shamed

The internet is being hailed as the latest weapon against late payers trying to keep creditors from their door. Trials with sample companies who have tried everything, including the courts, have shown “promising” results, with many offenders finally handing over cheques for old invoices. The new approach involves a 21 day stay of execution, during […]

MEX celebrates

Mortgage Express last week celebrated its 10th anniversary as a niche lender at a rooftop venue in central London. Tim Dawson, managing director of MEX, says: “We have worked hard to forge relationships with business and media partners and delivered record volumes in August.”

Abbey launches two year fixed rate mortgage

Abbey launches a new two-year fixed rate mortgage today, exclusively forintermediaries, at just 4.29%.The product, which is available to remortgagers only, has a 499 fee that can be added to the loan. Highlights include 75% loan to value, and the remortgage solution package includes free valuation for mortgage purposes (max 1,100) and free legal fees, […]

Market forces leave fringe regions stranded

Market forces are leading to the creation of dominant regional cities with little economic benefit enjoyed outside of central metropolitan areas, says the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors. At the first of a series of fringe meetings taking place at the Liberal Democrat, Labour and Conservative Party conferences, RICS called for attention to be directed […]

Diversified cashflows are key

Dividends are under pressure in some areas: but reliable yields can still be found. So says Adrian Frost, manager of the Artemis Income Fund, in conversation with Lawrence Gosling.


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