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HK Sales at Large Estates Decline to 9-Month Low, Centaline Says

The number of property transactions recorded at Hong Kong’s 10 largest estates this weekend fell to the lowest level since January, according to an e-mailed report from Centaline Property Agency today.

A total of 10 sales were registered, compared with 12 a week earlier, after the government introduced new measures at the end of October to curb property prices, Centaline said in the report.

The government imposed a 15 percent tax on property purchases by overseas and corporate buyers on Oct. 26 in its harshest measures yet to control home prices. Hong Kong Chief Executive Leung Chun-ying has pledged to rein in the real estate market to stem a three-year surge that has almost doubled prices in the city.

The tax to deter capital inflows and reduce the risk of a bubble in the world’s most expensive housing market marks the third set of curbs since August. Leung has also tightened mortgage requirements and boosted the supply of land for developers as the boom triggered protests over a widening wealth gap.

Monthly sales at the 10 largest estates rose 7.6 percent in October, Centaline said in a second e-mailed report. Turnover will probably slow in November and December because of the new tax, the report said.

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