China’s February home prices rise at flat pace
February’s average new-home prices jumped 12.4 per cent from last year, but rose 0.4 per cent from a month earlier.
China’s February home prices rose, although at a flat pace compared with a month earlier, as a slew of restrictive policies by local authorities deterred speculative buying and caused capital to flow from the biggest cities to smaller outlying urban centres.
February home prices in China’s 70 largest cities jumped 12.4 per cent from a year ago. Compared to a month earlier, February prices rose 0.4 per cent after seasonal adjustments by Goldman Sachs, based on data released by the National Bureau of Statistics.
“Overall, average housing price growth appeared to be resilient despite the tightening measures in top tier cities,” Goldman Sachs said in a research report. “More tightening measures may come should price inflation remain strong,” the investment bank said.
As many as 56 cities recorded price increases, a higher proportion than the 45 in January, according to the statistics bureau.
February new home prices jumped 22.1 per cent from last year in the Chinese capital , while Guangzhou’s prices soared 23.1 per cent.
Five additional cities launched new measures since Friday to cool down the red-hot home market.
On Friday, Beijing, Guangzhou, Zhengzhou and Shijiazhuang all announced additional tightening measures for new homes.
Beijing further raised the down payment ratio for second-time home buyers by 10 per cent, to between 60 and a record 80 per cent, as previous measures failed to cool down the home-buying frenzy,
other three cites demand home buyers to pay at least 70 per cent of down payment for their family’s second home.
The new measure also restrict residents, who have paid for more than 5 years of social security fund in the four cities, to buy only one home per one couple.
The latest move came from Changsha, the provincial capital of Hunan, with a suspension of new homes to non-local residents owning at least one flat. The city also tightened mortgage loans.
Changsha’s February new home prices rose 0.8 per cent compared with January, up 18.4 per cent from a year earlier. according to NBS data on Saturday.
Since the National People’s Congress, China’s annual legislative gathering, ended on March 15, three cities – Qingdao, Nanjing and Ningbo – have also stepped up their home-purchase restriction policies.
Price increases lost pace among the biggest cities of Beijing, Shanghai, Guangzhou and Shenzhen, slowing from January’s 0.3 per cent to 0.2 per cent last month, Goldman Sachs said.
Increases gained pace among second-tier cities, picking up from 0.5 per cent to 0.6 per cent over the same period. Third-tier cities saw average increases steady at 0.4 per cent while fourth-tier cities had the fastest pickup from 0.3 per cent to 0.5 per cent in February.
Sanya, the tourism city in Hainan province, attracted the most buying interest,with February prices gaining 1.3 per cent. Hefei, the provincial capital of Anhui, reported a 40.5 per cent annual gain in prices, the statistics bureau said.