China property investment slows, sales decline narrows
China's real estate investment continued to lose steam in the first seven months of the year while house sales remained on a downward track but contracted at a slower pace, official data showed Thursday.
Investment in property development rose 15.4 percent year-on-year to 3.68 trillion yuan ($580.4 billion) in the January-July period, down 1.2 percentage points from the growth rate posted for the January-June period, the National Bureau of Statistics said in a statement.
Of the total, investment in residential housing development increased 10.7 percent year-on-year, down 1.3 percentage points from that of the January-June period.
Home sales continued to dip, with 485.93 million square meters of housing sold in the first seven months, down 6.6 percent year-on-year.
However, the decline was slower than the 10-percent drop posted for the first six months, according to the NBS data.
The value of houses sold slipped 0.5 percent year-on-year to 2.87 trillion yuan, much lower than the 4.7-percent drop registered in the first six months, the NBS said.
Home prices have shown signs of rebounding over the last few months after the government eased its grip on credit to buoy the slowing economy.
But the government has maintained several tightening measures, such as higher down payments and property tax trials, as part of its efforts to keep house prices in check.
From January to July, developers purchased 189.82 million square meters of land, down 24.3 percent year-on-year, the NBS said.
The real estate development climate index fell 0.14 points to 94.57 in July from a month earlier, compared with a 0.19-point decrease in June, it said.