SHANGHAI, China - Property prices in major Chinese cities rose in September from the previous month, the first month-on-month increase since May as Beijing struggles to curb rocketing real estate prices.
Housing prices in 70 major cities were up 0.5 per cent in September from the previous month and rose 9.1 per cent from the same month a year earlier, the National Bureau of Statistics said.
The figure represented the first monthly increase in property prices since May, when prices edged up 0.2 per cent from April.
However, September's 9.1 per cent year-on-year rise was slower than the 9.3 per cent annual rise in August, according to the bureau.
It was the fifth straight month of slower year-on-year growth since April, when prices were up 12.8 per cent, the biggest annual rise since July 2005, when the survey expanded to 70 cities from 35.
Urban housing prices were unchanged from the previous month in both August and July and slipped 0.1 per cent in June as Beijing took steps to try to cap real estate prices and prevent an asset bubble.
The State Council, or cabinet, in late September ordered banks not to provide loans for third home purchases and said down-payments on all home purchases would have to be at least 30 per cent.
It also called for a trial reform of the property tax in some cities to be sped up and gradually expanded across the country.
However, some analysts said the new policies, which follow a range of measures introduced since April including credit restrictions and higher mortgage rates, offered few surprises.
Chen Zeming, a property researcher at the Shanghai Academy of Social Sciences, said Beijing's tightening policies were not having the desired effect and the market was instead still deciding prices.
"The property market is basically muted for a few months after the tightening policies in April, but both transaction volume and prices rallied in September," Chen told AFP.
"This indicated the government's policies to date, which are mainly administrative measures focusing on restricting the number of homes people can buy, failed to have any sustainable effect," he said.