China Home Sales Fall by Most in Almost Three Years on Curbs

Updated on
  • Sales drop 3.4% in value in October from a year earlier
  • Investment in real estate development grows at slower pace

Residential properties in Guangzhou, China.

Photographer: Qilai Shen/Bloomberg

China’s new home sales fell by the most in almost three years last month, adding to signs of cooling as local governments keep rolling out curbs to limit price increases.

Sales by value dropped 3.4 percent from a year earlier to 909 billion yuan ($137 billion), according to Bloomberg calculations based on data released Tuesday by the National Bureau of Statistics. That was the biggest year-on-year decline since November 2014.

Signs of a property slowdown, including price rises in fewer cities in September, may concern policy makers who want to avoid any sharp economic deceleration. The government is grappling with fueling growth while containing runaway home prices. President Xi Jinping last month renewed a yearlong call that homes are built “to be inhabited’’ and not for speculation, in his speech at the twice-a-decade Communist Party Congress, inking the language in one of the nation’s top policy frameworks.

Investment in real estate development slowed, growing 5.6 percent last month from a year earlier, down from a 9.2 percent increase in September, according to Bloomberg calculations.

A Bloomberg Intelligence index of Chinese real-estate owners and developers slipped 0.3 percent. It’s up 89 percent this year.

The data came amid signs of the government easing financing for property developers and as economic releases for October pointed to a moderating economy.

China accelerated approvals for new offshore bond deals for developers, according to people familiar with the matter. The National Development and Reform Commission, the top economic planning agency, has been more willing to approve larger quotas than earlier in the year, said the people, who asked not to be identified because the matter hasn’t been made public.

— With assistance by Emma Dong

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