China’s Property Market Cools as Beijing Home Prices Drop

Home property prices in Beijing fell for the first time in more than two years in June, while Shanghai further declined and Shenzhen stalled, pointing to significant cooling in China’s biggest real estate markets, official data showed.

Nationwide, home price growth slowed slightly in June as government efforts to keep prices in check weighed on larger cities, though smaller cities maintained rapid growth.

People in the industry expect home price growth in China’s largest cities to stay on a mild slowing trend for the next 12 months.

In June, average new home prices in China’s 70 major cities rose 10.2% from a year earlier, decelerating from May’s 10.4% gain, according to Reuters calculations based on an official survey out on Tuesday.

On a monthly basis, new home prices rose 0.7% in June, the same as the previous month’s reading, Reuters calculations based on data issued by the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS) showed.

“China’s 15 hottest property markets, mostly first- and second-tier cities, remained stable in June as a city-based property policy continued to take effect,” the NBS said in a statement accompanying the data release.

More than 45 cities, most of them top-tier cities with a sizable population, have imposed varying levels of restrictions since last October to curb fast-rising prices, with most of the latest measures introduced in late March.

These measures have started taking some heat out of the market, with sales and investment in property cooling slightly in the second quarter.

The cooling effect is most visible in China’s the biggest cities. Price growth in Shenzhen, Shanghai and Beijing slowed to 2.7%, 8.6% and 10.7%, respectively, from a year earlier.

From a month earlier, prices in Beijing fell 0.4%, marking the first fall since February 2015. Shanghai prices slipped by a further 0.2%, while Shenzhen prices remained unchanged.

Declining Sales

The value of new personal home mortgages in Beijing, Shanghai and Shenzhen in the first half of 2017 was…

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