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BEIJING, Dec 18 (Reuters) - Average new home prices in China's 70 major cities fell 0.7 percent from a year earlier, according to Reuters calculations based on official data published on Tuesday, a ninth straight month of year-on-year decline.
In month-on-month terms, however, prices rose for the fourth month in the last five, gaining 0.3 percent in November.
China's fight against property speculation, heading into its third year, has centred around reducing financing for buyers and limiting the number of homes people can own.
Yet government efforts to bolster a slowing economy, including interest rate cuts in June and July, have changed market sentiment and fuelled expectations of rising prices.
The National Bureau of Statistics said new home prices in Beijing rose 0.7 percent in November from a year earlier, compared with October's year-on-year decline of 0.2 percent. Shanghai's price fall meanwhile eased to 0.8 percent in November on a year ago, versus a 1.3 percent annual fall in October.
Reuters started its weighted China home price index in January 2011 when the NBS stopped providing nationwide data, only giving home price changes in each of the 70 major cities. (Reporting by Xiaoyi Shao and Nick Edwards; Editing by Jonathan Standing)