Glencore got carried away by the allure of debt – and found itself in a whole pile of trouble. It’s a warning buy-to-let landlords would do well to heed.
UK house price indicators
We watch five indicators, all of which have proved useful guides in the past. These include the RICS Housing Market Survey and data on both mortgage lending and mortgage approvals. Consumer confidence is another useful data point we keep an eye on.
You can read in detail what each indicator suggests for UK house prices using the tabs above.
What's the latest?June's Rics balance rose to 40, ie, 40% more surveyors saw prices rising than falling. The June Halifax UK three-monthly house price index saw a 9.6% year-on-year rise.
What does this mean for UK house prices? The Rics survey leads the Halifax index by around six months. With a balance of 40%, will Britain's housing market keep climbing?
What's the latest?July saw UK NMLG remain 5.6% higher. That compares with annual growth of 1.9% two years ago, 5.7% in December 2008 and 11.1% in February 2007. Meanwhile, the August Nationwide UK house price index is 3.2% higher year-on-year.
What does this mean for house prices? This long-term collapse in NMLG suggests UK house prices are standing at the cliff face. If they follow net lending trends, residential property values could slump by over 15%.
This gauges the monthly mood swings of Britain's consumers. It "tracks changes in personal finance, the general economic situation, inflation, unemployment, the current purchasing climate, and consumer spending and saving", say its compilers GfK/NOP.
What's the latest? For May, the GfK fell to 1. July's Halifax UK three-monthly house price index saw a 7.9% year-on-year rise.
What does this mean for UK house prices? This indicator leads the Halifax UK three-monthly house price index by some four months. The recent rise in the GfK indicates rising consumer confidence.
The UK CPI (consumer price index) is the most widely-used indicator of our cost of living.
What's the latest? July's UK CPI was 0.1% higher year-on-year, up 0% the previous month. The ?August Nationwide UK house price index is 3.2% higher year-on-year.
What does this mean for UK house prices? Higher CPI normally means higher interest rates. With CPI this low, interest rates look likely to remain at their historic record lows for a while yet.
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