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The PJ Tatler

Stephen Green


March 11, 2013 - 11:23 am

Perfectly happy couples are going to Splitsville to take advantage of a new law designed to cool off China’s housing bubble:

Divorce filings have surged like crazy in China over the past week, according to multiple reports. The reason? A new tax on property sales, which seems to have a loophole that lets people get around the tax if they separate from a spouse.

We first mentioned the surge on Wednesday, citing a report in Shanghai Daily.

Yesterday the NYT’s David Barboza followed up.

There are two big stories intertwined here.

The first is that China is trying to curb its well-known property boom. There’s a widespread belief that many markets in China are in bubble territory, and that a collapse or even a stall would be a catastrophe.

What’s interesting about the divorce story is the cat-and-mouse game that’s played between Chinese regulators and Chinese citizens/savers/investors who search out aggressive investment returns in the nooks and crannies of the law.

Tom Friedman will soon propose that China’s super-efficient government enact a law against unintended consequences.

(Hat tip to Debbie M., who finds all the good stuff.)

Stephen Green began blogging at in early 2002, and has served as PJMedia's Denver editor since 2008. He's one of the hosts on PJTV, and one-third of PJTV's Trifecta team with Scott Ott and Bill Whittle. Steve lives with his wife and sons in the hills and woods of Monument, Colorado, where he enjoys the occasional lovely adult beverage.

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Scary thing is that there are stories about that in the US. One Maryland resident recounted a story that she was told that if she divorced her husband, her special needs child would be eligible for more benefits because of the lower income.

It may not be true and it would be a bit tricky to get people to admit they get a legal divorce to get more benefits.
1 year ago
1 year ago Link To Comment
"“They always do this,” said Du Jinsong, a property analyst in Hong Kong for Credit Suisse. “When they implement new measures, people are always trying to circumvent the rules.”"

Gee, who could have foreseen that. (Do I really need a sarcasm tag?)
1 year ago
1 year ago Link To Comment
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