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Australian house prices rise by 6,556% over last 55 years

Property prices in Australia have been on an upward trajectory for longer than any other country in the world, according to a new report.

In fact, average house prices down under have increased by 6,556 per cent over the past 55 years, the analysis from the Switzerland-based Bank for International Settlements (BIS) shows.

To put this into perspective, house prices across the whole of the US grew by just 1,332 per cent during the same period.

On average, the length of time that property prices continued to rise for an uninterrupted period of time was 13 years, but those in Australia have now been on the up for more than a quarter of a century. Overall, a definite trend of upswings was recorded across the board.

"By contrast, downswings accounted for only eight per cent of the advanced economy sample; they lasted on average five years and the longest one, in Japan, lasted 13 years," the BIS report - written by Gregory Sutton, Dubravko Mihaljek and Agne Subelyte - explained.

House prices in Australia have risen by an average of 8.1 per cent each year over the past five decades, marking the sixth-highest rate of increase among developed nations.

The country with the fastest-growing property prices was Spain, where an average increase of 9.9 per cent was recorded each year. This was followed by the UK (9.3 per cent) in second place, New Zealand (8.8 per cent) and Italy (also 8.8 per cent), with Ireland (8.7 per cent) completing the top five.

The report authors commented that the persistence of rising house prices was one of their most "striking" findings.

"With the exception of Germany, Portugal and Switzerland, advanced economies have seen real house prices growing by an average of at least six per cent per year for 40 years or longer."

It was found that short-term interest rates typically helped to drive up house prices, with this trend seen throughout the majority of countries.

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