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Economy in Brief

U.S. New Home Sales and Prices Both Drop
by Tom Moeller  July 25, 2012

New home sales fell 8.4% last month to 350,000 from 382,000 in May, earlier reported as 350,000. June sales fell short of consensus expectations for 369,000. A two-thirds plunge in sales in the Northeast left them unchanged y/y. Sales in the South also fell 8.6% (+6.5% y/y) and reversed May's increase. To the upside was a 14.6% (19.6% y/y) rise in sales in the Midwest and a 2.1% gain (36.1% y/y) in the West.

The median price of a new single family home fell to $232,600 (-3.2% y/y). The 1.9% m/m decline was the third drop in four months. The average price fell 1.5% to $273,900 (+0.3% y/y) during June.

The length of time to sell a new home was roughly unchanged m/m at 8.0 months in June versus 14.4 months in early 2010. The inventory of unsold homes remained near the all time low at 144,000 units (-13.8% y/y). This is a 4.9-month supply at the current sales rate and nearly the lowest since late-2005.

The data in this report are available in Haver's USECON database. The consensus expectation figure is from the Action Economics survey and is available in the AS1REPNA database.

 

U.S. New Home Sales Jun May Apr Y/Y % 2011 2010 2009
Total (SAAR, 000s) 350 382 358 15.1 307 321 374
Northeast 16 40 32 0.0 21 31 31
Midwest 55 48 49 19.6 45 45 54
South 181 198 181 6.5 169 173 202
West 98 96 96 36.1 72 74 87
Median Price (NSA, $) 232,600 237,100 236,500 -3.2 224,317 221,242 214,500
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