New home price growth in China quickened last month after government measures to spur demand in smaller cities took effect.
The average value of new homes in 70 major cities around Asia’s biggest economy, excluding government-subsidised housing, rose 0.71 percent in May, according to data released by statistics bureau. That’s faster than an increase of 0.62 percent in April and a lift of 0.61 percent in March.
The gains follow a robust April during which home prices grew at the fastest pace since at least December and sales jumped. A market that’s holding up may be just what Beijing is aiming for: A relatively strong sector to underpin the economy at a time China is at odds with the US over trade, but not one that’s overheating. Big home price gains were more frequent on an individual city basis. In May, 12 cities saw price gains of more than 1 percent, versus six in April. That’s despite China’s housing ministry putting four cities on alert last month after noting a surge in dwelling values. In China, it’s now become pretty routine for local authorities to finetune housing policy on an individual city or town basis. In May for example, authorities in Nanjing and Zhuhai made it easier for people to get residency permits, buoying buyer demand. This micro finetuning could
be good news for developers, which generally want to sell quickly to avoid being caught in any downturn.