China Real Estate Information Corporation (CRIC – a subsidiary of E-House) released estimated 1Q18 sales data for the country’s top 100 property developers (LINK). Xinyuan China is shown at #69 with estimated sales of 6.04Bn RMB year-to-date.
CRIC does not have access to any official company records and compiles its estimates from 3rd party sources like municipal data. “Sales” estimated by CRIC are never going to equal “contract sales” reported under US GAAP financial statements and “contract sales” are also different from “revenues” reported by Xinyuan under percentage of completion accounting. Some of the sales in the CRIC data do not end up being closed and some are recognized in later periods (Xinyuan does not book a “contract sale” until it has received 30% of the price in cash). Despite these limitations, CRIC data has usually been a good indication of the trend in Xinyuan results in the past.
In February Xinyuan provided guidance that 1Q contract sales would be “flat compared to first quarter of 2018” meaning about $240mm or 1.5Bn RMB (earnings transcript), far below this week’s CRIC estimate.