BEIJING, May 15 (Reuters) - Real estate investment in China fell 3.3% in the first four months of 2020 from a year earlier, official data showed on Friday, as the economy struggles to recover from the coronavirus epidemic.
But the rate of decline eased from 7.7% in January-March.
Property sales by floor area fell 19.3% from a year earlier in the first four months of the year, according to data from the National Bureau of Statistics, compared with a 26.3% drop in the first quarter.
The property market is a key driver of growth in the world’s second-largest economy, and was among many segments of the economy hit hard by the coronavirus epidemic and tough containment measures.
New construction starts measured by floor area fell 18.4% from a year earlier, compared to 27.2% in the first three months of the year.
Funds raised by China’s property developers fell 10.4% in the same period, compared with a 13.8% drop for the first three months of the year. (Reporting by Huizhong Wu and Yawen Chen; Editing by Sam Holmes and Kim Coghill)