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October 22, 2018

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Home prices steady as govt measures hold firm

Home prices in major Chinese cities remained stable in September as local governments continued tight property curbs.

Month on month, prices in the four first-tier cities — Beijing, Shanghai, Shenzhen and Guangzhou — fell for new and existing homes, the National Bureau of Statistics said on Saturday.

Prices of new commercial housing sales in first-tier cities edged down 0.1 percent in September, compared with a 0.3 percent increase in August. Prices of existing home sales were also down 0.1 percent last month but stayed flat in August.

New and existing home prices in second-tier and third-tier cities increased at a slower pace from a month earlier, the data showed.

The NBS monitors the home prices in 70 large Chinese cities ­— the four first-tier cities, 31 second-tier cities and 35 third-tier ones.

Among all 70, 64 saw new home prices rise month on month in September, fewer than 67 in August. Three cities saw prices drop, compared to just one in August.

The total price increases in the first three quarters of this year were slower than the same period last year in all three tiers of cities, said NBS statistician Liu Jianwei.

New home prices declined year on year in two of the 15 “hot spot” cities, where speculative home purchases are particularly monitored, while one city saw prices unchanged from a year ago and 12 posted growth, Liu said.

To curb speculation, local governments have rolled out a spate of measures, including restrictions on purchases and increasing minimum down payments for mortgages.

The central authority vowed to regulate the property market order and “firmly curb the rises in housing prices” at a meeting of the Political Bureau of the Communist Party of China Central Committee in July.

NBS said Friday that commercial housing sales measured by floor area rose 2.9 percent year on year in the first three quarters, down 1.1 percentage points compared with the first eight months.


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