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Economy in Brief

U.S. Pending Home Sales Strong Again
by Tom Moeller June 2, 2010

The National Association of Realtors (NAR) reported that pending sales of existing single-family homes rose 6.0% during April versus March. The gain left home sales up 37.8% from the low in January of last year. The latest marginally beat Consensus expectations for a 5.0% increase.

The m/m performance of home sales continued to vary across the country. Last month sales rose in the Northeast (24.4 y/y), Midwest (18.0% y/y) and in the West (12.0% y/y). A modest decline in sales was logged in the South but sales still rose by nearly one-third versus last year.

Pending home sales figures are analogous to the new home sales data from the Commerce Department in that they measure existing home sales when the sales contract is signed, not at the time the sale is closed. The series dates back to 2001 and the data is available in Haver's PREALTOR database.

Pending Home Sales (2001=100)  April March February Y/Y % 2009 2008 2007
Total 110.9 104.6 97.7 22.4 95.1 86.9 95.9
  Northeast 97.9 75.6 77.7 24.4 76.7 73.0 86.1
  Midwest 104.2 100.1 97.7 18.0 88.8 80.7 89.6
  South 123.9 124.6 107.5 31.4 98.9 90.3 107.4
  West 107.9 100.4 98.0 12.0 109.9 99.2 92.1
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