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Mainland house prices jump 9.5% in Oct
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Housing prices in 70 major Chinese mainland cities jumped 9.5 percent in October from the same period last year, according to a survey by the National Bureau of Statistics and the National Development and Reform Commission.


The rise, 0.6 percentage points higher than that of September, hit a new high despite the government's efforts to curb surging property prices.


In the 70 cities, prices of newly-built commercial housing units were up 10.6 percent in October, an increase of 0.6 percentage points higher than that of September, while prices of low-cost housing rose 3.3 percent. Prices of luxury homes went up 12.3 percent.


The survey found Ningbo, Urumqi, Beijing and Beihai on top of the list of cities where the survey was carried out.


Housing prices went up 19.1 percent in Ningbo, 18.5 in Urumqi, capital of northwest Xinjiang Uygur Autonomous Region, 17.8 percent in Beijing and 17.7 percent in Beihai.


Liu Kun, a Greatwall Securities analyst, said a robust demand, tight supply and an increase in land development costs were major reasons for the rise.


Land prices increased 15 percent in the third quarter, a rise of 1.5 percentage points from the previous quarter.


Second-hand housing prices were up 8.7 percent in October, 1.1 percentage points higher than that of September.


The overall increase of prices in the third quarter reached 8.2 percent, compared with 5.6 percent in the first quarter, and 6.3 percent in the second quarter, said the NBS.


The government has been mulling new ways to suppress mounting house prices. In its latest bid to curb credit growth, the central bank announced on Saturday that it would raise commercial banks reserve ratio by half a percentage point as of November 26. It was the ninth hike this year.


(Xinhua News Agency November 15, 2007)

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