Housing in BeijingREUTERS/Jason Lee
Chinese economy: Swiss bank UBS this week downgraded its 2016 forecast for China’s GDP growth from 6.5% to 6.2% with 6.9% predicted for the current quarter. The country’s decision to reduce its stock of unsold homes “has led to a sharper real estate investment slowdown than previously envisaged” UBS analyst Wang Tao said, with an especially negative impact on its industrial and mining sectors.
Earlier this year, dismayed by the millions of unsold homes in its troubled real estate market, the Chinese government decided to buy up some of the properties and turn them into public housing. Since then, a handful of local governments have acquired thousands of empty homes at hefty discounts and resold them to the country’s poorest households.