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HONG KONG, March 22 (Reuters) - Country Garden Holdings Company Ltd, China's third-largest developer by sales value, said on Wednesday its 2016 core profit jumped 22.3 percent, beating analyst estimates as robust demand for homes spilled over into smaller cities.
The homebuilder which focuses on smaller cities said in a statement its core profit excluding revaluation gains grew to 12 billion yuan ($1.74 billion) last year from 9.7 billion yuan in 2015.
That compares with a Thomson Reuters SmartEstimate of 10.8 billion yuan from a poll of 20 analysts.
Net profit during the period rose 24.2 percent to 11.5 billion yuan, while revenue was up 35.2 percent at 153.1 billion yuan.
Before the results announcement, shares of Country Garden eased 1.5 percent, in line with a 1.4 percent fall in the broader Hong Kong stock market. ($1 = 6.8810 Chinese yuan renminbi) (Reporting by Clare Jim; Editing by Stephen Coates)