China's property market, credit crackdown poses risk for metals demand

Apr 30, 2010 | 10:34 AM |

China's crackdown on the property market has yet to slow demand for steel and base metals, but sentiment has soured as markets weigh the possibility of further tightening to come.

The government told banks in mid-April to raise down-payments to at least 50 percent for second-home mortgages and charge 1.1 times benchmark interest rates on those loans. It also urged banks to "sharply increase" down-payments and interest rates for third house buyers.

The October rebar contract on the Shanghai Futures Exchange has lost more than 6 percent since then, and copper prices on the exchange have fallen as much as 10 percent.....

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