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Latvia, Bulgaria housing prices skyrocket

Housing prices may be soft in the US and much of western Europe, but not in Latvia and Bulgaria where the cost of a house has skyrocketed.

The Knight Frank Global House Price Index shows the cost of housing in Riga, Latvia, jumped 37.7% in the second quarter of 2007 - the biggest spike in the world. Bulgaria came in second with a 27.1% leap in residential property prices, the Sophia News Agency reported Thursday. Latvia’s increase was actually down from the 45.3% increase in the same period last year, while Bulgaria’s is up from a 12.2% hike in the comparable period of 2006.

Global property prices rose at an 7.8% annual rate in the Q2, down from 9.6% a year earlier, the British real estate research firm reported. (m&