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Property News Weekly Digest
〈The Standard, August 5, 2023〉Interest rate hikes cast a pall over the market, with a strengthening wait-and-see attitude dragging down the property market even further.

Hong Kong and Shanghai Banking (0005) raised its prime rate by 0.125 percentage points to 5.875 percent on Friday - after the city's de facto central bank raised its base rate in lockstep with the US Federal Reserve.

Continuing interest rate hikes have set back investors, and coupled with recent launches by developers receiving lukewarm launches, secondary-market volumes continued to stay at low levels.

To sell flats sooner, owners have raised their negotiation ranges on base prices, driving down valuations for housing estates.

〈The Standard, August 4, 2023〉The northern metropolis is to be the future focus of growth for Hong Kong's economy and development initiatives, and the pace of development there is accelerating.

Of the areas in the Northern Metropolis footprint, a site within the Hung Shui Kiu/Ha Tsuen New Development Area has been proposed as the main terrain for the Hong Kong-Shenzhen western cross-boundary railway.

As such, the area is set to be reinvented as a core business district and developed into a regional economic and cultural hub.

In recent years, several large-scale developers have already "planted their flags" in the area. Some have even taken the lead in building large-scale housing estates. The projects are expected to be launched in the market one after another, bringing drastic changes to the district.

〈Hong Kong Business, August 3, 2023〉Hong Kong is working its way to becoming the preferred hub of high-net-worth individuals and affluent families in Asia with a new bill that provides tax concessions for family-owned investment holding vehicles (FIHV) and single family offices (SFOs).

The bill lays out different requirements for FIHVs and SFOs to be exempted from profits tax, said Alice Leung, partner at KPMG China who specialises on tax and private enterprise.

One of the requirements both FIHVs and SFOs must meet to be eligible for the concessionary profits tax rate of 0% is that they should be managed or controlled in Hong Kong.

〈Asian Post, August 2, 2023〉Hong Kong professionals who are devastated by the macroeconomic situation are now taking steps in their career plans, a Robert Walters report showed.

It also showed that 74% of professionals are taking steps to become ready in searching for another job. Less than 70% of workers' career cushion due to internal changes within their business (29%), the lack of job security from their company (22%), and turbulent economic conditions (17%).

John Mullally, Managing Director of Robert Walters Hong Kong said employees are now taking measures to secure their future career interests and earning prospects.

〈BBC news, August 1 , 2023〉Employers added 187,000 jobs, similar to June, while the jobless rate dipped to 3.5%, from 3.6% in the prior month, the Labor Department said.

The report was the latest sign of economic resilience in the US, despite a sharp rise in borrowing costs.

Hiring has slowed since last year and was weaker than forecast in July, but has held up better than many expected.

Economists have been anticipating a slowdown in the world's largest economy since last year, when the Federal Reserve began raising borrowing costs aggressively, responding to prices that were