Australian auction clearance rates remain below 50%

Scott Barbour/ Getty Images.
  • Australian auction clearance rates held below 50% for a second consecutive week in early October.
  • Sydney’s final clearance rate rose to 46.1%, a small uptick after tumbling to the lowest level in a decade a week earlier.
  • Auction volumes look set to fall modestly in the coming week.

Australian auction clearance rates remained below 50% in early October, suggesting recent prices declines are likely to continue in the period ahead.

According to CoreLogic, just 49.8% of reported auction results across the capital cities resulted in a sale last week, a modest improvement from the 45.8% level of late September that was the lowest since June 2012.

CoreLogic

The small uptick came despite a sharp increase in the number of properties going under the hammer, lifting to 1,817 from 895 a week earlier.

The final clearance rate was revised down from the preliminary estimate of 53.7%, reflecting that tardy results received are often for unsuccessful auctions.

Helping to explain the downward revision, Sydney’s final clearance rate was revised down from 53.5% to just 46.1%, coming within a whisker of exceeding the 43.8% level reported in the final week of September that was the lowest in a decade.

Melbourne, the busiest market in terms of market activity last week, recorded a final clearance rate of 51.8%, down from the initial estimate of 54.4%.

A year ago, Sydney and Melbourne recorded final clearance rates of 61.3% and 70.3% respectively.

CoreLogic

Across the smaller auction markets, Canberra recorded the strongest clearance rate across the country at 64.6%, followed by Adelaide at 62.3%.

Looking ahead, auction volumes look set to fall modestly this week with CoreLogic currently tracking 1,725 across the capitals. Reflecting softer market conditions, that total is well below the 2,525 properties that went under the hammer in the same corresponding week a year ago.

Melbourne will host 841 auctions with 614 scheduled in Sydney. Volumes will fall in all remaining capital city markets except for Perth and Hobart.

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