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China's Q3 property loans rise as market steadies

[BEIJING] Bank lending to China's property market increased in the third quarter, official data showed on Friday, another sign of a nascent recovery in the housing market.

The outstanding loans to property developers and home buyers by the end of September were up 20.9 percent from a year earlier, quickening from a 19.4 percent rise at the end of the June, central bank data showed.

For the first nine months, banks extended 1.92 trillion yuan (S$420 billion) worth of mortgages, up from 596.1 billion yuan a year earlier, according to a statement on the central bank's website.

Increased demand for property loans reflects improved home sales as recent government moves to boost the sector have started to gain traction.

Home sales and prices have improved in bigger Chinese cities over recent months after a barrage of government measures as it looks to revive the key sector to arrest an economic slowdown.

Official data showed earlier that home prices in China rose for a fifth consecutive month in September, suggesting a mild recovery in the housing market that will relieve some pressure on the struggling economy.