China's real estate investment rose 11.2% in the first five months of the year in annual terms, slowing from 11.9% in the January-April period, official data showed on Friday. It was the slowest pace seen since 2018 when it grew 9.5% in the January-December period.
For January-May, property sales by floor area fell 1.6% in annual terms, deepening from a 0.3 per cent decline for January-April, the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS) said in a statement. The real estate market, a crucial driver of growth for China, has shown some signs of recovery in recent months as some local governments loosen investment restrictions to support a slowing economy. Analysts say official efforts to boost economic momentum could continue propping up the market.
The picture is very uneven, however, as a slowdown has been felt deeply in many provincial cities in China after the real estate market suffered a downturn in late 2018. Price cuts offered by developers have led to protests by angry buyers, making authorities wary of the risk of social unrest.
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