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Early this morning, China’s National Bureau of Statistics released data showing that home prices declined in 53 out of the 70 cities it measures.That’s the latest in a slew of dismal data about the Chinese housing market which has come out so far this month. The housing industry is a primary driver of the Chinese economy and accounts for about 10% of GDP.
Analysts are worried that a slowdown in the housing sector could spell the start of a slowdown in China’s rapid growth.
This latest news comes a day after data came out showing that growth in real estate investment fell to 12.3% in December according to Reuters calculations, compared with 20.3% and 25.0% in November and October, respectively.
On Monday, Evergrande Real Estate Group, China’s second-largest developer by sales, also released flat 2012 sales expectations, blaming a dismal property market outlook.
While these numbers sound negative, it might nonetheless be wise to take them with a grain of salt. The Chinese government has been attempting to prevent the housing industry from overheating for the last few years. What’s more, property developers appear to be buying more land after a slowdown in purchasing.