Home Sales Slip as Price Rise

By Mark Lieberman

Managing Director and Senior Economist

Highlights

  • The pace of existing-home-sales – closed sales – FELL 1.3 percent, 70,000, in January to a seasonally adjusted annual sales rate of 5.46 million;
  • Sales pace for December was revised DOWN from 5.54 million to 5.3 million;
  • The inventory of homes for sales ROSE 30,000, 2.2 percent, to 1.42 million;
  • The inventory of homes for dale for December (SAAR) was REVISED DOWN 10,000 to 1.39 million;
  • Median price of an existing single-family home ROSE 0.7 percent, $800, to $266,300;

Trends:

  • Year-year sales were UP 10.8 percent, the sixth consecutive month of year-to year increases after 16 months of year-year declines;
  • The inventory of homes for sales ROSE for the first time in seven months despite the third straight month of price declines;
  • The year-year growth in the median price of an existing home marked the 95th straight month of year-year price growth..

Data Source: National Association of Realtors (NAR))

Image result for existing home sales

As expected (in this space a month ago) s existing home sales fell 1.3 percent though a slight increase in prices brought some sellers back to the market.

Home prices grew in January providing a modest boost to the inventory of homes for sale from the record low in December.

The boost in sales came as the average rate for a 30-year fixed rate mortgage dropped to 3.62 percent from 3.72 percent in December and from 4.46 percent in January 2019.

The sales pace underscored the continuing tough home sales market. The market improved modestly in 2019 with 5.34 million sales, up from 5.334 million one year earlier.

Hear Mark Lieberman every Friday, on the Morning Briefing on P.O.T.U.S. radio @sxmpotus, Sirius-XM 124, at 6:20 am Eastern Time. You can follow Mark Lieberman on Twitter at @foxeconomics.

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