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More Chinese cities record new home price increases

Published on Aug 18, 2012 1:18 PM

BEIJING(AFP) - New home prices in more Chinese cities rose in July than in the previous month, the government said on Saturday, amid cautious optimism the country's property market may be bottoming out.

Prices in 50 out of the 70 Chinese cities tracked by the government increased in July from June, the National Bureau of Statistics said in a statement. That represented a doubling from 25 in June.

China has been taking steps to tighten its housing market for more than two years. Measures have included prohibitions on buying second homes, raising minimum down-payments and imposing property taxes in certain areas.

The government, however, has also recently taken steps to boost the country's slowing economy by cutting interest rates twice in quick succession and encouraging lending by reducing reserve requirements at banks.

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