(Yicai Global) April 27 -- China may be the first country in the world to have reached a 96 percent urban home ownership rate, according to the central bank.
In an article the People’s Bank of China published in its China Finance journal today it also noted that the bulk of assets held by urban families is physical.
Home ownership in developed countries is mostly around the 60 percent level, according to data from Trading Economics. In the US, the figure was 65.1 percent at the end of last year, US Department of Commerce statistics show. The PBOC report puts China’s home ownership 28.5 percentage points ahead of the US.
The reports also said Chinese urban households prefer risk-free financial assets, with homes making up nearly 70 percent and financial assets 20.4 percent.
The average wealth of urban households is CNY3.18 million (USD449,200), with a median value of CNY1.63 million, per the report. The difference between the two is about CNY1.55 million, indicating an uneven distribution of household assets.
Beijing, Shanghai and Jiangsu province ranked as the top three for family riches, with CNY8.9 million, CNY8.1 million and CNY5.1 million, respectively. The lowest three provincial-level units are the Xinjiang Uyghur Autonomous Region and Gansu province in northwestern China and Jilin province in the northeast.
Households in urban areas generally take out loans. Some 56.5 percent of those surveyed are in debt. Among them, the total owed per household is CNY512,000 (USD72,346), with roughly 54 percent owing less than CNY300,000, 35.6 percent owing CNY300,000 to CNY1 million, while the remaining 10.5 percent owe over CNY1 million.
Editor: Ben Armour