From a new NBER working paper:

…Real, constant quality land values have increased by nearly 800% since the first quarter of 2003, with half that rise occurring over the past two years. State-owned enterprises controlled by the central government have played an important role in this increase, as our analysis shows they paid 27% more than other bidders for an otherwise equivalent land parcel.

Has the entire globe been overbuilt? I can foresee a future where a global housing bubble (maybe not this one) leaves governments realizing that the only way to sop up excess housing demand that is killing economic growth is to encourage procreation and immigration. Beggar-thy-neighbor immigration policies will be the new trade wars, and blogs and social scientists will debate about how best to incentivize having children. Statist governments (and, again, bloggers and social scientists) will try to figure out whether outlawing abortion will increase or decrease the population, which in a world of rich countries with more than open borders will have to go hand-in-hand with emigration restrictions.

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