Betting Against China’s Housing Market

You may have seen stories or headlines predicting a housing bubble bursting in China as it did in the US. China bashers are probably praying this will happen, but don’t count on it.  Placing a bet that China is going to stop growing its economy soon is throwing money away.

The Market Oracle talks about this in “Will China Housing Market Follow the U.S. In a Mortgage Bust?” Although the Bank of China held $10 billion in US subprime assets when the  US bubble burst, Chinese banks don’t make those loans in China—the risky subprime loans to poor people with bad credit was in US. The only reason the Bank of China held those assets was that they trusted America—then.

Older Housing in China

The real estate market in China is different. Chinese families contribute and buyers often pay 30 to 50% down. Also, when the bubble burst in the US, housing loans to GDP were 79% but in China that number was 15.3%.

In fact, according to the May 29 – June 4, 2010 The Economist, about 20 – 30% of urban housing is owned by the top income earners. The rest live in free housing provided by employers or in  state owned housing with low or no rent. It also helps that most Chinese save and avoid using credit cards. Then there is rural China where 750 million live and all the housing belongs to collectives and there are no mortgages or rent.

See Greedy Buyers Beware


Lloyd Lofthouse is the award-winning author of The Concubine Saga. When you love a Chinese woman, you marry her family and culture too. This is the love story Sir Robert Hart did not want the world to discover.

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