Wednesday, March 21, 2012

"Chaos if the curbs relaxed" -- Wen Jiabao

China Home Prices Post Worst Performance in a Year on Curbs Why the word "performance"? It's not supposed to be speculative. It's shelter. This is a big part of the problem. Words mean things.
Relaxing the curbs could cause "chaos" in the market, [Premier Wen Jiabao] said
This is the stare down contest of all time. This man is not going to blink.
New home prices fell in 27 of 70 cities last month from a year earlier and prices were unchanged in six cities, the national statistics bureau said in a statement on its website yesterday. That is the worst since the government began at the start of 2011 releasing individual data for 70 cities instead of a national average.
Note, this is NEW home prices.
The eastern city of Wenzhou posted the biggest drop for the fourth month, with home prices declining 0.5 percent from January and 8 percent from a year earlier, according to National Statistics Bureau data. A credit squeeze on smaller businesses in the city prompted Wen to visit in October and pledge financial aid.
There are anecdotes of private property liquidation to cover business costs and loan shark debts. Makes sense that Wenzhou would be the hardest hit given the collapse of the private lending sector. Property shifts money from the official banks (via mortgages) into private lending. (e.g., The person you buy the apartment from takes your mortgage money from a state bank and pays off their loan shark.)
Existing home prices in both Beijing and Shanghai dropped 0.2 percent from January, according to the statistics bureau.
. . .
The country's home sales declined 25 percent in January and February, according to data from the statistics bureau on March 16. The value of homes sold fell 25 percent after surging 26 percent in the first two months of 2011.

And speaking of chaos . . .
China’s Stocks Rise on Support Measure Prospects; Chalco Climbs
The Shanghai Composite Index (SHCOMP) rose 1.36 point, or 0.1 percent, to 2,378.20 at the close. The measure climbed 0.8 percent after the 21st Century Business Herald reported that as much as 40 percent of Guangdong province’s 100 billion yuan ($15.8 billion) of pension funds may be invested in stocks. The index later fell as much as 0.7 percent after the government said the money will “mainly” be invested in bonds.
Hat tip: pension pulse

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