The Foreign Investment Review Board released its Annual Report for 2013/14, which made for interesting reading.
And the increase in real estate applications decided by value was...whoa!
Developers from China, Hong Kong and elsewhere are consistently overpaying for sites in Sydney and Melbourne, inevitably pushing up prices.
If you check this blog back to its inception you will find that one of the chief reasons that I long ago picked out Sydney real estate as the out-performer was that I believed eventually the Aussie dollar must return from the stratosphere, and foreign investment would explode in Sydney and Melbourne.
New South Wales (39 per cent) and Victoria (41 per cent) accounted for 80 per cent of foreign residential approvals by dollar value in 2014, with Queensland (11 per cent) and Western Australia (5 per cent) mopping up most of the remainder. South Australia accounted for just 0.4 per cent.
The commercial space is seeing a spate of enormous deals being written.
In the past year both the Hilton Hotel and the Sheraton on the Park in Sydney have both been taken out by Chinese investment groups Bright Ruby and Sunshine Insurer for Group $442 million and $463 million respectively, while Goldfields House at 1 Alfred Street in Circular Quay also went recently for $425 million.
Clearly the new dwellings market in the most populous capital cities is increasingly being shaped by offshore funds, and the trends by country present not-so-subtle hints as to what is happening in the established property market too.
More than 750 business investment visas have been issued to qualifying "Significant Investors" since 2012, most of them to wealthy Chinese as intended.