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JPMorgan: There’s no housing bubble in China

October 6, 2010, 5:32 PM UTC

By Nin-Hai Tseng

Contrary to what many investors and banks fear, JPMorgan’s (JPM) China guru Jing Ulrich doesn’t think there’s a housing bubble in the world’s second largest economy.

Ulrich, speaking at Fortune’s Most Powerful Women Summit Wednesday morning about how to navigate China’s marketplace, says the surge in home prices exist in a few areas such as the country’s major cities but prices generally aren’t inflated.

Her remarks come as Chinese government officials worry about an uptick in inflation. Earlier this year, officials pursued measures to tighten lending for purchases of second homes, as well as other policies to keep the general rise in prices under control. For Japan at the end of the 1980s and the United States in 2008, real estate bubbles ended in big crashes.

Ulrich, managing director and chairman of China equities and commodities, said there are enormous opportunities for Western firms to partner with China, partly because of the country’s imbalance in resources, such as coal. But challenges stand in the way, such as protectionism. And while China is poised to continue its extraordinary growth, shortage of labor and income disparities will likely remain.