Chinese Premier Wen Jiabao called on local authorities to “decisively” curb real estate speculation and take steps to rein in the property market after data showed prices surged the most in two years last month.
Cities that have had “excessively fast” price gains should promptly impose home-purchase restrictions if they’ve not done so already, China said in a statement released yesterday after a State Council meeting headed by Wen. Provincial capitals and municipalities reporting directly to the central government should also publish annual price control targets to keep new- home costs “basically stable,” according to the statement.
Shares of Chinese developers listed in Shanghai fell the most in more than six months on Feb. 19 on concerns the government would impose new restrictions to cool the real estate market after prices rebounded. The government’s statement yesterday was weaker than market expectations, because it lacked new measures and can’t reverse price increases, according to CEBM Group, an advisory company.
“If there’s no tough policies such as suspending second mortgages or raising taxes on existing-home transactions, with tightness in the near-term demand and supply unchanged the trend of rising home prices can hardly change,” Luo Yu, a Shanghai- based analyst at CEBM, wrote in an e-mailed note yesterday.
Home prices rose 1 percent last month from December, the most since January 2011, according to data from SouFun Holdings Ltd., the nation’s biggest property website.
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