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Dow Jones Newswires: China’s property market contracts further amid curbs on speculation

BEIJING — China’s new construction starts measured by floor area contracted further in the first 10 months of the year, showing a substantial slowdown of the country’s giant housing market. This also signals Beijing’s resolution to curb housing speculation amid a broader economic slowdown brought about by the crackdown on the property sector.

New construction starts from January to October dropped 7.7% from a year earlier, widening from the 4.5% decline in the first nine months of the year, according to data released Monday by the National Bureau of Statistics. China’s new construction starts have been contracting since July, as Beijing’s curb on housing speculation yielded results.

Growth in real-estate investment slowed. The reading increased 7.2% in the January to October period, down from an 8.8% gain in the first nine months, as Beijing enforced deleveraging and limited developers’ financing sources.

Home sales by volume–a major indicator of demand–also reported slower growth in the first 10 months of the year, rising 12.7% compared with the 17.8% gain in the January-September period.

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