Business and Economics > Real Estate

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Andrea Deghi, Mr. Junghwan Mok, and Tomohiro Tsuruga
The COVID-19 pandemic crisis has severely shocked the commercial real estate (CRE) sector, which could have important implications for macro-financial stability going forward because of the large size of the sector and its strong interconnectedness with the real economy. Using a novel methodology, this paper quantifies vulnerabilities in the CRE sector and analyzes policy tools available to mitigate related risks. The analysis shows that CRE prices were overvalued in several major advanced economies in 2020:Q1. It also shows that such price misalignments increase the likelihood of future price corrections and exacerbate downside risks to future GDP growth. While the path of recovery in the sector will depend inherently on the pace of overall economic recovery and the structural shifts induced by the pandemic, easy financial conditions may contribute to an increase in financial vulnerabilities and persistent price misalignment. Macroprudential policy can, however, be effective in curbing the financial stability risks posed by the CRE sector.
International Monetary Fund. Monetary and Capital Markets Department
This technical note on nonfinancial corporations and households vulnerabilities on France analyzes the structure of nonfinancial corporate financing in the French economy, potential vulnerabilities of the corporate sector, and their possible channels of transmission through interconnections with the financial system. The objective of this paper is to document the evolution of French corporate debt since the global financial crisis, analyze the riskiness of this debt, the quality of allocation of this debt, and uncover potential heterogeneity across sectors and firms which may have implications at the macroeconomic level. This paper also complements existing studies by the Institut National de la Statistique et des Études Économiques, the Haut Conseil de Stabilité Financière and the Banque de France by undertaking a cross-country comparative analysis. Empirical analysis suggests that corporate debt may be allocated efficiently across publicly listed companies, but the picture is less clear among nonpublicly listed firms.
Mr. Adrian Alter and Jane Dokko
We examine the relationship between house price synchronicity and global financial conditions across 40 countries and about 70 cities over the past three decades. The role played by cross-border banking flows in residential property markets is examined as well. Looser global financial conditions are associated with greater house price synchronicity, even after controlling for bilateral financial integration. Moreover, we find that synchronicity across major cities may differ from that of their respective countries’, perhaps due to the influence of global investors on local house price dynamics. Policy choices such as macroprudential tools and exchange rate flexibility appear to be relevant for mitigating the sensitivity of domestic housing markets to the rest of the world.
Iacovos Ioannou
Lithuania’s current credit cycle highlights the strong link between housing prices and credit. We explore this relationship in more detail by analyzing the main features of credit, housing price, and output cycles in Baltic and Nordic countries during1995-2017. We find a high degree of synchronization between Lithuania’s credit and housing price cycles. Panel regressions show a strong correlation between a credit upturn and housing price upturn. Moreover, panel VAR suggests that shocks in housing prices, credit, and output within and outside Lithuania strongly impact Lithuania’s credit.
International Monetary Fund. Monetary and Financial Systems Dept.

Abstract

The October 2017 Global Financial Stability Report finds that the global financial system continues to strengthen in response to extraordinary policy support, regulatory enhancements, and the cyclical upturn in growth. It also includes a chapter that examines the short- and medium-term implications for economic growth and financial stability of the past decades’ rise in household debt. It documents large differences in household debt-to-GDP ratios across countries but a common increasing trajectory that was moderated but not reversed by the global financial crisis. Another chapter develops a new macroeconomic measure of financial stability by linking financial conditions to the probability distribution of future GDP growth and applies it to a set of 20 major advanced and emerging market economies. The chapter shows that changes in financial conditions shift the whole distribution of future GDP growth.

International Monetary Fund. Research Dept.
This paper provides a brief overview of the latest research on the ability of forecasters to predict recessions. The paper highlights that few recessions have been forecast before their onset. Forecasters tend to be excessively cautious and do not revise their forecasts promptly and sufficiently to reflect incoming news. Nor do they fully take into account interdependence among economies. This paper also focuses on robust growth determinants highlighting that a fundamental problem confronting researchers is the lack of an explicit theory identifying the determinants of growth.