BEIJING, May 18 (Xinhua) -- China's property sector showed new signs of cooling in April, with more Chinese cities reporting month-on-month drops in prices and fewer cities reporting gains, official data showed on Sunday.
Of a statistical pool of 70 major Chinese cities, new homes in eight cities saw month-on-month price declines in April, double of that for March, the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS) said in a statement.
A total of 44 cities saw month-on-month price gains in new home prices last month, down from 56 for March and 57 for February, the NBS data showed. Among the 44 cities with rising new home prices, growth decelerated in 31 last month.
The average month-on-month price increase for new homes slowed notably to 0.1 percent last month from 0.3 percent in March. The biggest month-on-month price increase was recorded in the southeastern coastal city of Xiamen, which rose 0.4 percent month on month from March.
Hangzhou, in east China's Zhejiang Province, saw its new home price dropping the most of the 70 cities, down by 0.7 percent from March.
The other seven cities with month-on-month declines in new home prices were Ningbo, Wuxi, Wenzhou, Jinhua, Anqing, Ganzhou and Huizhou.
For existing homes, prices increased in 35 cities month on month in April, notably down from 42 cities in March and from 46 in February, according to the statement.
Another 22 cities saw month-on-month declines for existing homes, with Hangzhou dropping the most, by 0.8 percent. Hefei, capital of central China's Anhui Province, recorded the biggest month-on-month increase for existing homes -- 0.7 percent.
Year on year, prices of new homes increased in 69 cities last month, even though 67 of them saw the rates of growth moderating, said Liu Jianwei, a senior statistician at the NBS.
In 61 cities, the growth rates also decelerated in the prices of existing homes in April, Liu said.