China: House prices decline at sharpest annual pace in seven years in August
September 15, 2022
House prices in 70 large- and medium-sized cities fell 0.3% month-on-month in August, according to a weighted average index calculated by Refinitiv from data issued by the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS). The print followed July’s 0.0%.
On an annual basis, house prices declined 1.3% in August, which was greater than July’s 0.9% fall and marked the worst result since August 2015. Accordingly, annual average house price growth fell to 1.4% in August (July: +1.8%). This signals a worsening trend in the sector.
Other housing market indicators continued to show a depressed real estate market, with the declines in property investment and residential housing starts deepening in January–August relative to January–July. Fresh Covid-19 restrictions, weak consumer sentiment and debt-laden developers will keep the property market subdued in the near term, notwithstanding interest rate cuts by the Central Bank and the partial rollback of property market curbs.
Author: Oliver Reynolds, Economist