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Economy in Brief

U.S. New Home Sales Rise M/M but Tread Water This Year
by Tom Moeller  November 25, 2015

Sales of new single-family homes increased 10.7% during October to 495,000 (AR) from 447,000 in September, revised from 468,000. The gain left sales up 4.9% y/y but unchanged since December. Sales of 500,000 had been expected in the Action Economics Forecast Survey. The rise contrasts to Monday's report of a 3.7% decline in existing single-family homes.

The median price of a new home plunged 8.5% from September and was down 6.0% y/y. The average sales price declined 1.0% m/m and was off 4.7% y/y.

Home sales in the Northeast more-than-doubled to 40,000 following a sharp decline in September. Sales were at the highest level since January 2010. Sales in the South also were firm, rising 8.9% to 281,000 (5.2% y/y). Sales in the Midwest gained 5.3% to 60,000 but were down 4.8% y/y. Home sales in the West eased 0.9% to 114,000 and were off 2.6% y/y.

The inventory of unsold homes increased 8.7% y/y and there was 5.5 months supply at the current sales rate. That figure is up slightly from 4.8 months at the beginning of the year. The median number of months a new home was for sale fell to a record low of 2.8. 

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

Five Questions Related to U.S. Monetary Policy is the title of St. Louis Fed President & CEO James Bullard's speech and it can be found here.


U.S. New Single-Family Home Sales (SAAR, 000s) Oct Sep Aug Y/Y %, SA 2014 2013 2012
Total 495 447 513 4.9 440 430 368
  Northeast 40 17 32 60.0 28 31 29
  Midwest 60 57 59 -4.8 58 61 47
  South 281 258 297 5.2 244 233 195
  West 114 115 125 -2.6 110 106 97
Median Price (NSA, $) 281,500 307,800 294,600 -6.0 283,775 265,092 242,108
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