China State Banks Pledge at Least $31 Billion to Developers
China’s mega state-owned banks are offering at least 270 billion yuan ($38 billion) in new credit to property developers as part of the nation’s push to ease turmoil in the real estate market.
Bank of China Ltd. and Bank of Communications Co. disclosed their agreements in statements on Wednesday while Postal Savings Bank of China Ltd. made the announcement on Thursday. Industrial & Commercial Bank Ltd. said it expects to finalize a plan this week, while Agricultural Bank of China Ltd. didn’t disclose the amount it will provide. China Construction Bank Corp. has also yet to announce its agreement, although the bank has set up a 30 billion yuan fund to buy properties from developers in September. Chinese developers rallied Thursday as more signs of government policy support emerged for the debt-ravaged sector. A Bloomberg Intelligence stock gauge of builders climbed as much as 5%, with CIFI Group Holdings Co. and Longfor Group both surging over 10%. Property firms’ dollar bonds also gained, with investment-grade Longfor rising as much as 6 cents. China’s banks have been told to provide at least 1 trillion yuan in funding in the final months of 2022 to the battered property sector to avoid a broader fallout on the economy that is also weighed down by Covid lockdowns. At a meeting with banks on Monday, the People’s Bank of China said it planned to provide 200 billion yuan in interest-free re-lending loans to commercial banks through the end of March 2023 to support them to provide matching funds for stalled property projects. Earlier this month regulators issued a 16-point plan to financial firms for boosting the real estate market, with measures that range from addressing developers’ liquidity crisis to loosening down-payment requirements for homebuyers.
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