An Oxford University report claims that house price rises in parts of London can be attributed directly to high-end buyers sheltering their money in ‘safe haven’ bricks and mortar after political turmoil in their own countries.
"This goes a long way towards explaining why London house prices have continued to rise at a disproportionate rate compared with the rest of the country, and can also shed light on the well-known fact that capital flows appear to go 'uphill' from relatively poor to relatively rich countries" claims the report authors, Tarun Ramadorai and Cristian Badarinza.
The report suggests that financial and political uncertainty in past decades led to significant levels of Chinese, Middle Eastern and Russian purchasing of London property.
Since the Euro-crisis and global downturn seven years ago, they have been joined by Italians, Spaniards and Greeks.
The researchers used house price and transaction data from the Land Registry, the Office for National Statistics and the Nationwide building society, cross-checking them against the dates of international economic and political crises.