Australian house prices continued to fall last week

(Chris Hyde / Getty Images)
  • CoreLogic data showed house prices dipped again last week across Australia‚Äôs five biggest capital cities.
  • It follows a 0.6% fall in July, which was the worst one-month result for seven years.
  • Annual price falls in Sydney have now reached 5.5%.

Australian home prices dipped again at the start of August, after monthly data showed prices fell sharply in July.

The latest price data from CoreLogic coincided with a relatively soft result for auction clearance rates over the weekend. Preliminary data showed clearance rates dropped despite a material decline in auction volumes.

Weekly data showed house prices steadied briefly in mid-July, but price falls by the end of the month still reached -0.6% across Australia’s combined capital — the largest monthly fall in seven years.

CoreLogic data for the week ended August 5 showed prices dipped by 0.1% across Australia’s five biggest capital cities, led by a 0.2% drop in Melbourne.

CoreLogic

Prices in Sydney, Brisbane and Perth dipped by 0.1%, while the Adelaide market held flat at 0.0%.

The combined result left prices 0.6% lower for the month, unchanged from the July result.

As the downturn in Australia’s major east coast housing markets becomes more entrenched, prices in Sydney have now fallen by 5.5% in annual terms.

Annual price growth for Melbourne turned negative last month and is now down by 0.7%.

CoreLogic

Last week, AMP chief economist Shane Oliver said he expects prices to decline by another 10-12% amid an environment of tighter lending restrictions. Oliver expects prices to bottom out with falls of around 15% by 2020.

Sydney has now had less 500 properties go to auction for four straight weeks and auction volumes dipped sharply from the prior week.

However, the number of properties on the market in Sydney continues to track around 20% higher than the previous year. And in line with recent weeks, Melbourne’s listing rate is still around 10% higher than the same time a year ago.

Despite that, new listings — defined as properties put on the market within the last 6 months — continued to decline across each of Australia’s five largest capitals.

The slowdown indicates homeowners remain hesitant to put their property up for sale in a falling market.

CoreLogic

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