China New-Home Prices Rise in More Cities as Recovery Spreads

New-home prices rose in more Chinese cities tracked by the government last month after the removal of property curbs and easier credit boosted demand, reducing pressure on developers to offer discounts.

Ganzhou in central China’s Jiangxi province joined Shenzhen in posting an increase in January from a month earlier, according to data from the National Bureau of Statistics on Tuesday. Prices fell in 64 cities, compared with 65 in December, and were unchanged in four.

China’s new-home sales rose in December from a year earlier, reversing 12 months of declines after the central bank in November cut interest rates for the first time since 2012 and eased restrictions in an industry that had become a drag on growth. Developers have shifted their priority to profit margins instead of volume growth, and some deliberately delayed new project offers last month amid expectations that prices will rise, according to a Bocom International Holdings Co. report on Monday.

In December, Shenzhen became the first of the 70 cities tracked by the government to report a month-on-month increase in four months. Prices in Shanghai and Guangzhou were unchanged last month, halting declines.

The average new-home price in 100 cities tracked by SouFun Holdings Ltd. rose 0.2 percent in January from December, the first such increase since May last year, according to China’s biggest real estate website.

— With assistance by Dingmin Zhang

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