Min Zhu, the IMF’s deputy managing director, said the tools for containing housing booms were “still being developed” but that “this should not be an excuse for inaction”.
House prices “remain well above the historical averages for a majority of countries” in relation to incomes and rents, Mr Zhu said in a speech to the Bundesbank last week, which was only released on Wednesday because it clashed with a European Central Bank announcement.
“This is true for instance for Australia, Belgium, Canada, Norway and Sweden,” he said.
In the wake of the global recession central bankers have cut interest rates to record lows, pushing house prices to a level that the IMF regards as a significant risk to economies as diverse as Hong Kong and Israel.
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