Israel housing prices rising 3rd-fastest in world

Prices fall 1.2% in 2011 but social justice protest fail to make significant dent in prices; global housing prices continue to fall around the world.

Palestinian construction worker in Har Homa 390 (photo credit: Baz Ratner/Reuters)
Palestinian construction worker in Har Homa 390
(photo credit: Baz Ratner/Reuters)
Despite the recent social justice protests, Israel has held on to its spot as the third-hottest housing market in the world, according to a survey by CNBC, based on data from real estate agents Knight Frank. The survey found that housing prices in Israel jumped more than 21percent in 2009 and16% in 2010.
Israel ranked third with a five-year growth of 54.5%, bumping Singapore into fourth place with five-year growth of 50.5%, but well behind China in top spot with five-year growth of 110.9% and Hong Kong in second place with growth of 93.7%.
CNBC noted that "high home prices in Israel led to a series of protests in 2011 with demonstrators asking the government to intervene to cool the market. Thousands of protesters made headlines last July to voice concerns over a housing shortage and high rentals. The demonstrations seem to have had an effect on property prices, which fell 1.2% in 2011, according to Knight Frank."
But CNBC sees home prices rebounding saying: "After an interest rate cut from 3.25% to 2.5%in February, there appears to be resurgence in property demand, with new mortgages issued by banks jumping by more than 14% in March compared to the two previous months."
On average, housing prices around the world fell significantly, with the fourth quarter of 2011 being the worst quarterly performance since 2009. In the final quarter of 2011 prices fell in 60% of the countries covered by the index. All 12 of the bottom rankings were occupied by European markets due to the precarious state of the Eurozone's sovereign debt crisis.
The report stated that the statistic indicate that a "return to significant house price growth around the world is some way off yet.

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