It won't impress the shrinking legion of property bulls, but Fairfax recently reported that Australian house prices fell for a second straight year during 2012, marking it the "worst run for the national property market in 16 years". It seems optimism has largely fallen out of the once booming market, with 77% of 9000 respondents to a Fairfax survey stating property prices need to fall further.

The performance of property has confounded most optimists who have long claimed that property prices would be cushioned by interest rate drops (rates were cut by of 2% during 2012).