Richard Barkham


Richard BarkhamRichard Barkham is responsible for macroeconomic and property market forecasting and global capital allocation. He is a director of the Grosvenor Holding Company and Grosvenor Fund Management and leads a team of 10 real estate economists. Prior to joining Grosvenor, Richard was Reader in Finance in the Department of Land Management at the University of Reading. He has published widely on the performance of REITs, property companies and global real estate markets. He has also written a highly cited book on entrepreneurship and regional economic development. Richard’s PhD is in economics.

Papers Published in World Economics:

Real Estate and the Great Financial Crisis

Politicians and macro policymakers have identified regulatory weakness in the banking sector as the key cause of the Great Financial Crisis (GFC). This allows the easy apportionment of blame and the straightforward, if painful, reforms to banks’ operating procedures. In fact, the real economic damage was done by the world’s first coordinated real estate boom and slump which was facilitated by the rise of shadow banking but not caused by it. From the mid-1990s cheap goods from Asia suppressed inflation, permitting a long period of monetary stimulation. Cheap capital from the same source depressed long-term interest rates. Real estate markets, particularly after 2001, experienced explosive growth which stimulated excessive construction activity and bank lending. Real estate constitutes about 40% of the world’s wealth and central banks singularly failed to see the dangers arising from a collapse of values in this sector. This is the real story of the GFC, which is set out in this article.

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