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Property/Stamp duty hike reduces sales

The Chancellor's Budget stamp duty raid on homes worth more than £2m has triggered a 23 per cent fall in sales of properties valued between £2m and £10m in the capital, the estate agency Knight Frank said yesterday.

According to its latest prime central London index, prices rose 0.5 per cent in July and are up more than 10 per cent in the past year. Prices have now risen by 49 per cent since the post credit-crunch low in March 2009.