walls and globalization

Globalization, House Prices and Walls

There are lots of anti establishment movements these days. Brexit, Trump and Sanders are the most poignant right now, but there are many similar nationalist movements across Europe. Election results are telling the story.

Is this the downside of globalization? Do people actually prefer an inefficient economy? Are you ready to compete on a global scale?

A local example, here in Toronto and mirrored in Vancouver, is endlessly rising home prices. It isn’t my fellow millennials bidding over asking price to tear down a house and build a bigger one. In the few personal experiences ive encountered it’s  always foreign buyers. The data, more broadly speaking, suggests these overseas agents are having a role.

So is the inability to own an abode the cost we pay for access to global markets? It very well might be. And for me, that’s okay. But did the majority of our politicians and government economists foresee this trade off when they voted for free trade? Do they regret it? Do their constituents? I don’t, but some others likely do.

Plus, is local home ownership something we want to encourage in our communities? Again, data and talking points suggest this could be the case. So it begs the question…

Is that how we got to talk about building walls? On one hand, it’s crass and crude. On the other, well, surely we must do something if we want to maintain our societal norms, right?

Interesting times, as always.