The Housing Crunch Without Houses

In an interactive feature of mine earlier this month, the most bubblicious bubble of them all was Astana, the new capital of Kazakhstan. Well, it seems to be bursting already: Bloomberg is running the wonderful headline "Kazakhs Get Craters, Not Homes as Credit Crunch Halts Builders" on a story which reports that a $4 billion emergency government investment program is trying to buy up 6,000 uncompleted apartments in the capital. And things are just as bad in the former capital, Almaty, where 140 housing projects have been halted and 29,000 people have paid for apartments which haven’t been built. So, if you’re suffering under the burden of negative equity right now, at least be thankful that your home exists.

(Via Krugman)

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