Shanghai's housing market stays weak

Key index has been losing its strength for three consecutive months.

The Shanghai housing market remains weak in August, with a moderate retreat in volume and prices.

The index for occupied homes, which monitors month-over-month prices in 130 areas, dipped 0.23 percent to 3,988 in August from July, the Shanghai Existing House Index Office said on Monday.

The average cost of pre-occupied homes increased in 58 areas, fell in 52 areas and remained flat in 20 .

That compared to gains in 60 areas, declines in 53 areas and no change in 17 areas in July.

“The index lost its strength for the third consecutive month at a continuously mild pace along with slightly shedding momentum among home buyers, indicating that the market has somewhat stabilized,” the office said.

“The fact that monthly transaction volume of existing homes stayed above the 10,000 unit threshold despite tightening measures also suggests rather strong demand.”

Sales of pre-owned homes fell for the fifth straight month in August to about 11,600 units, a month on month decline of 3.6 percent and a year-on-year plunge of 77.1 percent, Shanghai Homelink Real Estate Agency Co said in a report released earlier.

Citywide, Sanlin in Pudong New Area remained the best-performing area by sales with monthly transactions rising to 480 units from 315 in July. It was closely trailed by Jinshan New City, where about 300 units of pre-owned homes changed hands last month.

About 163,290 units of pre-used homes were available on the local market for sale by the end of August, down 2.14 percent from a month earlier, the office said.

Sales within the Outer Ring Road, which accounts for almost 40 percent of the city’s volume, rebounded 4.44 percent last month from July, a possibly sign that the market had bottomed.

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