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Economy in Brief

U.S. Existing Home Sales Unchanged
by Tom Moeller October 25, 2005

The National Association of Realtors reported that September total existing home sales remained unchanged from the prior month at 7.28M. The August level was revised down slightly. Consensus expectations had been for a slightly steeper decline to 7.20M sales.

Sales of single-family homes rose 0.6% to 6.38 million while condo & co-op sales fell 4.3% to 900,000 (+9.8% y/y).

The data cover sales closed in the latest and previous months, and contrast to the new home sales data which count sales at the signing of a contract.

By region, changes in single family home sales were mixed in September. In the Northeast sales rose by 1.2% (4.8% y/y) for the second consecutive month and rose 4.9% (12.6% y/y) in the South.In the West single family sales slipped 3.3% (+1.4% y/y) and have fallen in two of the last three months. In the Midwest sales fell 3.4% m/m but remained up 3.6% y/y.

The median price of an existing single-family home fell 3.4% m/m to $212,200 (14.3% y/y). It was the second decline during the last three months.Prices are not seasonally adjusted and frequently soften following the peak Spring-Summer selling season.

The latest release from the National Association of Realtors is available here.

Existing Home Sales (000, AR) Sept Aug Y/Y 2004 2003 2002
Total Home Sales 7,280 7,280 7.2% 6,723 6,170 5,653
  Single Family Home Sales 6,380 6,340 6.9% 5,913 5,441 4,995
Single Family Median Home Price ($,000) $212.2 $219.7 14.3% $182.8 $169.1 $157.6
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