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Fast Comment NorwayThrough the volatility, housing prices have levelled out (S.A)

  1. Housing prices rise 0.7 percent in December after falling 0.6 percent in November
  2. Housing prices have generally stabilised since June
  3. Oslo a little weaker than the national average, but the deviation is not large
Housing prices up 0.7 percent in December following -0.6 percent in November
The upshot: national housing prices rose by 0.7 percent in December (S.A), following -0.6 percent in November. Broadly flat over the past couple of months, in other words, and that has also been the tendency over the past seven months. Through the volatility, housing prices have on average changed by a monthly pace of 0.05 percent (S.A) since June. Furthermore, the data continues to signal that activity remains high. Housing units approved for sale have continued to be in the higher end of the interval. But the same goes for the volume of transactions. Oslo is showing a somewhat weaker tendency with regards to price performance, however, but the deviation is not large. In seasonally adjusted terms, housing prices in Oslo fell by 0.4 percent in December. That marked the fifth consecutive monthly decline (S.A), but we emphasise that the figures are not far from zero (see the chart below). The key message is that the housing market continues to show fairly stable price trends. For 2018 as a whole, national housing prices rose by a modest 0.7 percent compared to the average of 2017. That was clearly below the average wage growth rate and, lately, household credit growth has fallen further. Looking into 2019, we maintain a moderately positive outlook, with housing prices continuing to rise by a little less than general nominal wages. Some have warned about clear downside risk to housing prices, but that is not our main scenario. Norges Bank is also moderately positive for 2019. The recent data does not alter the outlook for the key policy rate path.




Marius Gonsholt Hov

Senior Economist


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