Citibank's Lawrence Lam forecasts a 7 percent drop in property prices from the middle of September to the end of March next year.

Lawrence Lam, Citibank’s head of retail banking, forecasts a 7% drop in property prices from the middle of September to the end of March next year.

However, common Hongkongers are convinced they cannot buy their first homes.

Citibank interviewed 500 people in September, about 52% of them believe property price levels will go down in the following year, 58% reckon there is no chance for them to afford a home in the next decade.

According to Citibank’s head of retail banking Lawrence Lam Chi-Kong, the negative view on the property market is due to various factors, he believes the global economic slowdown and the grim outlook of different sectors has created downward pressure on home prices.

Most Hong Kong people expect property prices in the city to decline in the next two years, according to a survey by Citibank.

But while 52 percent of the 500 people surveyed by the bank believe price levels will go down, some 58 percent reckon there is no chance for them to afford a home in the next decade, the Hong Kong Economic Journal reported.

The results are the most pessimistic since Citibank started doing the quarterly survey. In last quarter’s poll, about 52 percent expected a price rise in the property market.

Lawrence Lam, head of retail banking, attributed the poor sentiment to the economic slowdown in the city and overseas, as well as the lackluster performance of the retail sector and the capital market.

Lam forecast a 7 percent decrease in property prices from the middle of September to the end of March next year.

However, the overall level may still rise 2 to 3 percent for the full year, Lam said, adding that the fed fund rate is unlikely to be raised by 2 percent before 2018.

Source: Eji nsight News

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