China Eases Housing Tax and Lending Rules

China on Monday courted home buyers with a bigger tax break as it cut downpayment requirements for the second time in six months, stepping up a fight against sliding house prices that is imperiling the world’s second-biggest economy.

The People’s Bank of China (PBOC) said on its website that commercial banks can now lower their minimum downpayment requirement for buyers of second homes, and with outstanding mortgages, to 40 percent from 60 percent previously.

The Ministry of Finance, in a separate statement around the same time, said individuals selling an ordinary house were exempt from business taxes if they had owned it for more than two years. Analysts said sellers were previously exempted from taxes only if they owned the houses for at least five years.


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