China home prices rise 7.5% in July, marks 7th straight month of increase

BEIJING (REUTERS) - Average new home prices in China's 70 major cities last month rose 7.5 per cent from a year earlier, according to Reuters calculations based on official data published on Sunday, marking the seventh straight month of year-on-year increases.

In month-on-month terms, prices rose 0.7 per cent in July, easing from June's gains of 0.8 per cent, according to calculation.

The National Bureau of Statistics (NBS) said new home prices in Beijing rose 14.1 per cent last month from a year earlier, compared with June's year-on-year increase of 12.9 per cent. Shanghai's prices were up 13.7 per cent from a year ago, versus 11.9 per cent annual growth in June.

Despite having leaned against the house market for almost four years, China still faces record home prices, partly because controls have butted up against local governments' need to keep property market buoyant so they can sell land at high prices to raise revenues.

Reuters started its weighted China home price index in January 2011, when the NBS stopped providing nationwide data, only giving home price changes in each of 70 major cities.