The Most Important Sector in the Universe
Plus: Brazil, Visa/Mastercard, Greensill
It’s been described as “the most important sector in the universe” and it’s easy to see why. The Chinese property sector is first and foremost big. The total value of all the homes in China stands at $60 trillion – twice the size of the US residential market and bigger even than the entire US bond market.
It’s also central to the economy. Real estate investment stood at over 13% of GDP in 2019, of which more than 70% was linked to residential building. Add in the contribution of the construction industry and the share jumps closer to 29%. Yet even this potentially understates the importance of property to the economy: Housing accounts for almost two-thirds of households’ overall assets – compared with around a third in Japan and a quarter in the US – so it has a major bearing on people’s spending decisions. 1
It’s central to g…