Wednesday, September 05, 2007

Housing Reaganomics

There are many different ways of gauging economic health. The stock market. Job numbers.

One of the more interesting ones (to the star-struck voyeur in me, anyway) is to keep tabs on what the wealthy are up to. I'm not sure they're as clairvoyant as, say, the consumer price index is when it comes to how much cash we all tend to have in our pockets at the end of the day, but there's a gaggle of signs around that suggesting that the well-off are spending like there's no tomorrow -- worldwide credit crunch be damned.

Celebrities don't appear to be feeling the pinch. Whether its private jets or gaudy, $50,000 handbags, celebrities are still splashing money around like its going out of style. Sales of racing horses are skyrocketing, both in volume and individual prices. If oil-rich Saudi chiefs are throwing down so feverishly on their money-losing hobby, the good times will surely trickle down to the rest of us, the theory goes. And lately, prices for the ponies have been heading up in a hurry.

Closer to home, the super-rich are seemingly just as confident. REMAX put out a report this week saying that sales of luxury homes are booming. Canada's real estate market has hot and cold pockets across the country, but sales of luxury homes (the definition of what constitututes luxury changes from region to region) have already shattered last year's numbers, and its only September.

So good news all around, then. Your boss's retirement is definitely within reach. Try to remember that when you check how your stock portfolio's done over the last little while.

1 comment:

nancy (aka money coach) said...

oh... ouch! I thought the title of your post was perfect. Your examples kind of makes me think of Dickens' world! Or Marie Antoinette. I wonder: if we were continually confronted with data about the growing disparity of wealth, would we Canadians pause for a moment, and reconsider: is this the kind of society we want to continue creating? If not, what kind do we want? And what do we need to do, both in macro economics and as individuals, if we want to adjust the trend? hard questions -- money, economics, citizenship.