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Economy in Brief

U.S. Pending Home Sales Stabilize
by Tom Moeller November 14, 2007

The National Association of Realtors reported that for September, level of pending home sales held steady at the August level. That level was, however, still down 20.4% from one year earlier and 24.4% year to date.

The latest monthly figure is about one third below the peak average level during 2005. The data date back only to 2001.

These figures are analogous to the new home sales data from the Commerce Dept. in that they measure home sales when the sales contract is signed, not at the time the sale is closed.

In further confirmation of the slow rate of home sales, the Realtors indicated in an earlier report that the number of homes on the market and available for sale rose September to a level 16.3% above the year earlier level.

In the Western part of the nation, sales were about unchanged m/m but remained down 25.6% from one year earlier.

In the Northeast, pending home sales are down 23.1% y/y. In the Midwest sales are down 14.4% and in the South sales are down 19.7%.

The pending home sales data are available in Haver's PREALTOR database and the number of homes on the market are in the REALTOR database.

Pending Home Sales (2001=100)  September August Y/Y 2006  2005 2004
Total 85.7 85.5 -20.4%  112.1  124.2 120.5 
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