China's Property Sector Groans Under the Weight of Its Debt

Dec 27, 2017 | 09:00 GMT
Commercial and residential property in Shanghai.

China's latest property bubble may be on the verge of bursting.

(PETER PARKS/AFP/Getty Images)

China's property sector is no stranger to the booms and busts that characterize most capitalist economies. But in the two decades since the country commercialized the allocation of real estate, the flourishing industry has become a model of the investment-driven growth on which the Chinese economy so heavily relies. After ballooning in 2015-16, the property sector now accounts for a sixth of the country's gross domestic product and is the largest source of local government revenue and household assets. For the most part the industry seems poised to continue growing in the years ahead as China urbanizes and restructures its economy. There is a chance, however, that the lasting property bubble will burst. ...

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