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Economy in Brief

U.S. New Home Sales Rebound in August
by Tom Moeller  September 27, 2022

• Home sales stand at highest level since March.

• Sales rise throughout country.

• Median sales price declines sharply.

New single-family home sales during August rose 28.8% (-0.1% y/y) to 685,000 (AR) after falling 8.6% to 532,000 in July, revised from 511,000. The Action Economics Forecast Survey expected 500,000 sales in August.

A two-thirds sales increase (-21.9% y/y) in the Northeast to 25,000 led last month's overall rise, following no change in July sales. Home sales in the South jumped 29.4% (10.4% y/y) to 467,000, the highest level this year. Home sales in the West improved 27.5% (-24.0% y/y) to 130,000, the highest level in three months. In the Midwest, sales increased 16.7% (5.0% y/y) to 63,000, recovering most of July's fall.

The median price of a new home declined 6.3% during August (+8.0% y/y) to $436,800 following an 8.9% July gain. The average sales price of a new home weakened 6.3% (+11.0% y/y) to $521,800 following a 19.2% July rise. These sales price data are not seasonally adjusted.

Sales weakness accompanied a 0.4% increase (23.3% y/y) in the number of unsold new homes to a seasonally adjusted 461,000, up from a low of 142,000 in July 2012. The seasonally adjusted months' supply of new homes for sale declined to 8.1 months from 10.4 months in July. The median number of months a new home stayed on the market plunged to a record low of 1.7 months. These figures date back to January 1975.

New home sales activity and prices are available in Haver's USECON database. The consensus expectation figure from Action Economics is available in the AS1REPNA database.

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