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China's pain is London property's gain

Thursday, October 08, 2015 - 01:38

The top of London's property market has been the golden realm of international investors and speculators for some time, but some had worried what effects China's economic slowdown might have on the market. As Joel Flynn reports, it could yet be good news for those trying to flog five million pound flats.

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Next year the first new flat at what was once Battersea Power Station will be completed. It'll be one of 18,000 new properties at the iconic location and in the surrounding Nine Elms development A studio flat here could set you back 1.4 million pounds. But there's no shortage of buyers. Many are Asian investors - and that's set to increase because of China's economic problems. Jeremy Cook is Chief Economist at World First. SOUNDBITE: World First Chief Economist, Jeremy Cook, saying (English): "Chinese investors, especially when risk assets are falling around the world, you just have to look at emerging markets stock markets to see what's happening there, they're looking for safety, they're looking for havens. They don't want to be in bonds, they want to be in property." A weakening currency and the slowdown in China's economy are worrying investors there. But while assets elsewhere in the world continue to fall on those worries, London property is one area where some are seeing opportunity. And according to Mercury Homesearches Managing Director, Jeremy McGivern, that's only set to grow. SOUNDBITE: Mercury Homesearches Managing Director, Jeremy McGivern, saying (English): "I think we will continue to see money coming in from China purely because there's still huge amounts of money being generated in China. Yes, the growth is lower, but actually it's from a much bigger base, and it's actually slightly inconceivable the amount of wealth being created." It might not all be good news for these investors though. Many of them will be hoping to "flip" their flats - making a profit on a quick sale. The problem - according to McGivern - is that the market for these "flipped" properties is shrinking. That means a good opportunity could become a liability - however luxurious it seems.

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China's pain is London property's gain

Thursday, October 08, 2015 - 01:38