Average new home prices in China's 70 major cities rose 4.9 percent in April from a year earlier, according to Reuters calculations based on official data published on Saturday, marking the fourth straight month of year-on-year increase.

In month-on-month terms, prices rose 1 percent in April, easing from March's gain of 1.2 percent, it said.

Rising home prices have reignited concerns about property inflation and have forced the government to launch a fresh round of measures in March to try to cool them.

The National Bureau of Statistics said new home prices in Beijing rose 10.3 percent in April from a year earlier, compared with March's year-on-year increase of 8.6 percent. Shanghai's prices were up 8.5 percent in April from a year ago, versus 6.4 percent annual growth in March.

Reuters started its weighted China home price index in January 2011 when the NBS stopped providing nationwide data, only giving home price changes in each of 70 major cities.

(Reporting By Xiaoyi Shao and Michael Martina; Editing by Sanjeev Miglani)