Real Growth in US Housing Prices

Last week, I graphed this data on a log scale but here it is on a standard linear scale which emphasises the exponential growth of housing prices before inflation. This behavior, along with bubbles in the market, makes residential housing look like a better long-term investment than it is. While a house is often the largest "investment" most people will ever make it is often a form forced savings combined with a hedge against inflation and when inflation is high your house value will often increase while your mortgage does not. Enjoy

Data is originally from Robert Shiller's book Irrational Exuberance which is updated on his website

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US Inflation (Log) 1790-2015

Data Source: Measuring Worth | Made with GraphSketcher & Illustrator. Next week the same graph on a linear scale.

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Inflation and Price/Earnings Since 1880

Copies of this graphic can be purchased at Zazzle

Inflation is when prices go up. However, inflation's relationship to stock prices can be a little more complex. In this graph, I am revisiting historical data I used several years ago in a series of historical graphs looking at the stock market (see GDP per Capita vs US Stock Prices and Real Growth in Stock Returns Dividends Reinvested).

I graphed the price/earnings ratio back to 1880 and highlighted the years that inflation was high and when there was deflation. The P/E is calculated from trailing 10-year earnings. The low inflation years (5% or less) had the highest P/E while the high inflation years has the lowest P/Es. Deflation years had P/Es near the average.

S&P data from Robert Shiller and CPI data from MeasuringWorth. Graphic was created using OmniGraphSketcher.

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