IMF Warns UK About High House Prices

The International Monetary Fund (IMF) has warned George Osborne that accelerating house prices and low productivity pose the greatest threat to the UK’s economic recovery.

It said rising property values could leave households more vulnerable to income and interest rate shocks.

It also called on the Bank of England to enact policy measures “early and gradually” to avoid a housing bubble.

In April, the IMF said the UK economy would grow by 2.9% in 2014.

The Fund’s annual health check of the UK economy found it has “rebounded strongly and growth is becoming more balanced” adding economic growth would “remain strong this year.”

It is a significant turnaround from last year when the IMF’s chief economist Oliver Blanchard appeared to have a public falling out with the chancellor after he criticised the government’s austerity policies.

This year IMF managing director Christine Lagarde admitted the Fund “got it wrong” in its assessment adding that while the UK’s economic recovery began with consumer spending, it was now rebalancing towards an “investment-led recovery”.

The chancellor said the IMF was “right to warn the government that risks still remain” to the UK’s economic recovery.

via BBC

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Alfonso Esparza

Alfonso Esparza

Senior Currency Analyst at Market Pulse
Alfonso Esparza specializes in macro forex strategies for North American and major currency pairs. Upon joining OANDA in 2007, Alfonso Esparza established the MarketPulseFX blog and he has since written extensively about central banks and global economic and political trends. Alfonso has also worked as a professional currency trader focused on North America and emerging markets. He has been published by The MarketWatch, Reuters, the Wall Street Journal and The Globe and Mail, and he also appears regularly as a guest commentator on networks including Bloomberg and BNN. He holds a finance degree from the Monterrey Institute of Technology and Higher Education (ITESM) and an MBA with a specialization on financial engineering and marketing from the University of Toronto.
Alfonso Esparza