US existing home sales fall in August

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Despite mortgage loan rates running at record lows and new hiring by companies strong, used home sales across the United States fell 0.9 percent in the month, after a 3.2 percent drop in July. Despite mortgage loan rates running at record lows and new hiring by companies strong, used home sales across the United States fell 0.9 percent in the month, after a 3.2 percent drop in July.

Stewart Property

US sales of existing homes slows for the second straight month in August, with tight supply partly to blame,

Despite mortgage loan rates running at record lows and new hiring by companies strong, used home sales across the United States fell 0.9 percent in the month, after a 3.2 percent drop in July.

That put the annual pace at 5.33 million units, slightly higher than the 5.29 million unit pace of a year ago.

"Healthy labor markets in most the country should be creating a sustained demand for home purchases," according to Lawrence Yun, NAR chief economist.

"However, there's no question that after peaking in June, sales in a majority of the country have inched backwards because inventory isn't picking up to tame price growth and replace what's being quickly sold." Showing the tightness of the market, the median existing-home price in July, including single-family homes and multiple-home units, was $240,200, compared with the 2015 average of $222,400.

Ian Shepherdson of Pantheon Macroeconomics called the second monthly downturn a surprise, saying that indicators of pending sales had pointed to a rebound.

"The lagged mortgage applications numbers point to a clear increase in sales over the next few months, followed by a decline into the year-end," he said.


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