(Bloomberg) -- Country Garden Holdings Co.’s home sales tumbled last month from a year earlier, extending woes for the Chinese developer that’s already facing a wind-up petition and missed a deadline for releasing annual results.

Contracted sales for March plunged 83% to 4.3 billion yuan ($590 million), following an 85% annual slide in February, corporate filings show. Sales rebounded 16% last month from February, traditionally a slower period with the Lunar New Year holiday.

The sales drought exacerbates the cash crunch for Country Garden, whose crisis entered a new chapter after it made a surprise announcement last week that it will miss a deadline for reporting annual results due to insufficient information. The stock has been suspended from trading in Hong Kong due to the delay. Earlier this year, a Hong Kong court received a creditor’s petition to wind up the company following its default on dollar debt. 

China’s property sector so far has shown little hint of a turnaround. Private data showed March’s home sales extended a steep decline from a year earlier and agencies don’t expect a notable recovery this month. Property investment slumped 9% in the first two months, more than expected.

Homebuyers are avoiding defaulted developers on concerns about their ability to complete housing projects, including Country Garden, which was once China’s biggest developer by sales. Its closest rival, China Evergrande Group, was ordered to liquidate in January. Another giant, China Vanke Co., has also seen its sales slump worsen as it tries to stave off default. 

Country Garden has been utilizing the regulator’s latest property funding program, as the sales drought threatens its operational cash flow. It said 272 residential projects have been included by local authorities for financing support as of Mar. 15.


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