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New home sales and building starts tumble

OFFICIAL figures from the Ministère de l'Ecologie, du Développement durable et de l'Energie, show that the number of new build property sales in France fell nearly 25% in the third quarter of 2012.

There was also a fall of 21% in the number of house building starts and a 6.9% fall in building permits for the same third quarter, pointing to 2013 being an equally difficult year for property builders.

Uncertainty and doubts on employment prospects and the European economy are one of the reasons behind the fall, with industry representatives saying the figures point to a period just as bad as the sub-prime crisis of 2008.

These figures back up those released earlier this month from industry association, the Fédération des promoteurs immobiliers, which pointed to a fall of 30% in the number of new build sales by its members.

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