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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.

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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.