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In 2012, China surpassed Japan as the world’s largest luxury market. By 2015, McKinsey & Co. had predictedChina’s luxury market would account for one-fifth of global sales with a value of $27 billion.

Beijing’s luxury ad ban may now dampen growth in the market.

China’s latest move follows a series of recent statements and decisions from top leaders exhorting Communist party officials to lead a low-key lifestyle to avoid imagery of a leadership out of touch with many of its citizens.

Last November, as Chinese President Hu Jintao prepared to begin the power transition to his successor Xi Jinping, Hu cautioned that failing to stop corruption could result in the demise of the Communist party.

In December, new party rules announced that ornate flower displays, waving schoolchildren welcoming visiting dignitaries and large groups of state officials traveling abroad were prohibited or frowned upon. China’s Central Military Commission also banned luxury banquets for military forces and alcohol at official functions.

In January, China’s National Bureau of Statistics released an official Gini coefficient reading for the first time in ten years. The figure that measures a country’s rich-poor divide was 0.474. A separate survey from December 2012 by China’s Southwestern University revealed the country’s 2010 Gini coefficient was 0.61.

A number over 0.40 indicates potential for social unrest, according to the United Nations.

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