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This study aims to determine temporal trends and spatial distribution of the annual and monthly precipitation in the Haihe River Basin, China, during 1951–2008. A significant decreasing trend was observed for the annual precipitation, mainly attributed to the abrupt decrease in the flood-season precipitation (June–September) around the year of 1979. No significant trend was revealed for precipitation within Period I of 1951–1979 and Period II of 1980–2008. Results of this study indicated that the relative contributions of the flood-season precipitation decreased temporally with time and spatially with elevation. This study also identified a potential movement of storm centers from east to west portions of the basin. In addition, analysis on the precipitation anomalies also suggested a redistribution of the non-flood season precipitation over the study area. Compared with the west portion of the basin, generally, the east received relatively more precipitation during the non-flood season, while similar trend of precipitation redistribution was not observed in the flood season. Copyright © 2011 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.