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NBS: Home prices stay stable in July

By Wang Ying in Shanghai | China Daily | Updated: 2018-08-16 09:10
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A saleswoman introduces a housing project to visitors at a developer's sales outlet in Huai'an, Jiangsu province. [Photo by Zhang Zhaojiu/For China Daily]

Home prices in major Chinese cities remained stable in July as the government continued stepping up property curbs, the National Bureau of Statistics said on Wednesday.

In July, Shanghai, Nanjing and Quanzhou in Fujian province saw their new home prices drop, each down 0.1 percent from a month ago, while 65 cities reported price increases, with Sanya in Hainan province continuing to take the lead, the bureau said on Wednesday.

The four first-tier cities of Beijing, Shanghai, Guangzhou and Shenzhen reported a 0.2 percent month-on-month growth in new home prices in July, but 0.4 percentage points less than in June.

Specifically, Shanghai's new home prices edged down 0.1 percent month-on-month in July, while the prices in Beijing, Guangzhou and Shenzhen rose 0.2 percent, 0.6 percent and 0.5 percent respectively, according to NBS figures.

Compared to the same period last year, new home prices in the four cities increased 0.2 percent, and their used home price rose 0.5 percent.

Among the 70 Chinese mainland cities surveyed by the NBS, 31 second-tier cities, mostly provincial capitals, saw an increase of 7.3 percent and 5.5 percent in new and used home prices respectively from a year ago, 1 and 0.9 percentage points higher than in June. Thirty-five third-tier cities saw their new and used home prices increase 6.7 percent and 5.1 percent year-on-year, up 0.7 and 0.8 percentage points from the previous month.

Liu Jianwei, a senior statistician at the NBS, noted that local governments had continuously rolled out measures to strike a balance between supply and demand to promote the healthy development of the property market.

A total of 39 cities saw gains of 1 percent or more in new home prices in July from a month ago, and those in Sanya had risen above 3 percent for two months in a row, followed by Jinan, Kunming, Yantai, Yichang, Yangzhou and Changsha, all above 2.5 percent month-on-month in July.

"The cities reporting new home price rises have a lot to do with their policies to attract talents as well as their comparatively loose policies in new home purchases," said Liu Baogen, a market analyst with property agency Shanghai Lianjia.

According to Liu, after announcing favorable policies to seek talents, Yantai saw its new home price rise 2.9 percent month-on-month in July, gaining 2 percentage points compared to June.

"The Ministry of Housing and Urban-Rural Development has maintained its stance in taming speculation and market irregularities, so cities with a higher growth rate will turn to tightening policies, as Changsha and Kunming did in late June and early July," Liu said.

Over 60 cities announced more than 70 real estate tightening measures in July, and more than 25 cities have followed suit so far in August, statistics show.

"The home price growth trend suggests that more measures should be launched from local governments to discourage home prices," said Zhang Dawei, chief analyst at Centaline Property Agency Ltd.

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