(photo credit: Uriel Messa)
Israel had the third-fastest growing home prices in the world in the first
quarter of 2011, ranking behind only Hong Kong and Singapore, according to
Global Property Guide.
Home prices in Israel in the first quarter of 2011
were 7.81 percent higher in inflationadjusted figures and 12.31% higher in
nominal figures than in the corresponding quarter of 2010, the guide said.
However, the pace of home prices slowed markedly compared with the preceding
year: home prices rose 15.66% in inflation-adjusted terms between the first
quarter of 2009 and the first quarter of 2010, and rose by 19.71% in nominal
Israeli home prices rose 1% in inflation-adjusted figures in the
first quarter of 2011 over the preceding quarter, and rose 1.78% in nominal
Meanwhile the Central Bureau of Statistics reported Sunday that
1,703 new homes were sold in April 2010, 20% fewer than in March, due to the
Passover holiday. Demand for new homes totaled 2,939 in April (including homes
for sale and homes not for sale), up from 2,834 homes in April 2010. 11,018
homes were available for sale at the end of April, the lowest figure since the
beginning of the year. New home sales were 18% higher in January-April than in
the corresponding months of 2010.
Inventory of new homes has exceeded the
11,000 threshold since January, its highest level since the 11,046 available
housing units March 2009.
The housing inventory fell by an average of
0.5% per month in January-April. 4,531 of the new homes available for sale were
in the Central District, 2,049 were in the Tel Aviv District, 1,568 were in the
Southern District, and 1,537 were in the Jerusalem District. The housing
inventory is sufficient for 8.9 months at the current rate of sales.
Sunday, IDF Radio reported that OECD Secretary General Angel Gurria has praised
the Israeli economy, saying that the body for developed economies is “following
the rise in real estate prices” and that “the steps taken by the Bank of Israel
and the Israeli Government will be effective and will help moderate
Regarding the possible candidacy of Bank of Israel Governor
Stanley Fischer for the position of head of the International Monetary Fund,
Gurria said, “I have expressed my opinion many times – it is crystal clear that
Fischer is suitable for the position. I have nominated him in the past. Today he
is not a candidate and it will remain as such unless he and the Government
Speaking about peace in the region, Gurria said, “It
is clear that stability in the region will stimulate the Israeli
He added that unemployment is the most worrisome challenge to
the world economy today and if it improves then the situation will seem much