Latest posts

Housing

Financial innovation beats Kiwibuild

Besides, the construction of 9,000 homes is more than 26 times the number of buyers who have qualified for Kiwibuild so far. It’s a pity that complex finance initiatives do not make for great photo opportunities with the Prime Minister. [...]

Economic literacy and the housing debate

At my next housing discussion, I will not mention I am an economist. Instead, I will demand that houses grow on trees, that infrastructure funding falls from heaven, and that people stop charging each other for products and services. Kumbaya, kumbaya. [...]

Housing reform vs populist gimmickry

It is hard to introduce populist policies without hurting the economy. That is the takeout from the Government’s decision to water down its planned restrictions on foreign property buyers. [...]

Caution needed on value capture

As tempting it may appear to tap into land value uplifts, we need to be cautious. The model can work – but we need to apply it only in the cases where it can work. [...]

The power of ideas

"The ideas of economists and political philosophers, both when they are right and when they are wrong, are more powerful than is commonly understood. Indeed the world is ruled by little else.” [...]

The wrong type of home ownership

We should not regard the homeownership rate as the most important measure of a functioning housing market. Just because the ownership rate is falling does not tell us much on its own. Neither is a high ownership rate necessarily a positive. [...]