Aidan Regan: Treating housing as a financial asset is at the heart of conflict in our societies

Unaffordable housing and unequal access to housing wealth are fuelling deep divides, and we need a progressive net wealth tax that includes housing capital

The lesson to be learned is that the financialisation of housing has led to a decline in housing affordability. Picture: Getty

Thomas Piketty’s 2013 international bestseller Capital in the 21st Century made a bold and simple claim: wealth is accumulating and concentrating in the hands of fewer people, leading to growing levels of wealth inequality.

The French economist’s argument was that this is not an anomaly of 21st-century capitalism; in fact, it’s built into the DNA of the financial market. If liberal democratic economies are to generate a fair and competitive market, they need a fiscal ...