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Economy in Brief

U.S. Pending Home Sales Surge Again
by Carol Stone December 29, 2011

The National Association of Realtors (NAR) reported that pending sales of existing single-family homes surged further by 7.3% in November after October's 10.4%. The index level (2001=100) reached 100.1, the highest since April 2010. All four major regions of the country participated, with the West having the largest gain over the month, 14.9%, while the Northeast was up 8.1%, the South 4.3% and the Midwest 3.3%. All regions are above their year-ago volumes except the Northeast, which is just 0.3% under November 2010.

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 are available in Haver's PREALTOR database.

Pending Home Sales (2001=100) Nov Oct Sep Y/Y % 2010 2009 2008
Total 100.1 93.3 84.5 5.9 89.4 94.5 87.0
Northeast 77.1 71.3 60.6 -0.3 71.6 76.6 73.5
Midwest 91.6 88.7 71.5 9.4 80.3 88.6 81.1
South 103.8 99.5 91.6 8.7 97.0 98.0 89.8
West 121.2 105.5 105.8 2.9 100.8 109.3 99.4
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