HONG KONG Aug 6 (Reuters) - China Vanke Co Ltd, the largest mainland China property developer by sales, on Monday reported a 25.1 percent rise in net profit for the first half of the year, slightly stronger than expected.
The net profit for the first half totalled 3.73 billion yuan ($585 million). Revenue for the first six months grew much faster than anticipated, up 53.7 percent to 30.72 billion yuan, but margins fell. Developers have been cutting prices in China to win business in a market downturn.
Jefferies had forecast net profit of 3.5 billion yuan from revenue of 27.7 billion yuan.
The company said the value of contract sales for the first half of the year fell 4.7 percent to 62.5 billion yuan, on increased volume.
Shenzhen-listed Vanke's shares are up 16.5 percent so far this year, in line with the 15.8 percent rise in the Shenzhen Stock Exchange Composite Index but outperforming industry peers, as reflected in the 11.7 percent rise in the Shanghai property stock subindex. ($1 = 6.3727 Chinese yuan) (Reporting by Alex Frew McMillan; editing by Denny Thomas and Anthony Barker)