US existing-home sales rise in October
US sales of existing homes rose in October at the highest annual pace in nearly a decade, pointing to an autumn revival in the housing market, industry figures showed.
Total existing home sales, including condos, condominiums and single-family houses, grew 2 percent month-over-month to 5.6 million units, according to the National Association of Realtors (NAR).
The result beat an analyst consensus forecast of 5.4 million units. The pace of sales for the month was also 5.9pc above the same point in 2015, making it the fastest growth since February 2007.
First-time buyers continued to account for roughly one-third of sales at 33pc, according to the NAR data. The median sale price was US$232,200, 6pc above October 2015, marking the 56th consecutive month of year-on-year gains.
Lawrence Yun, NAR chief economist, said the widespread national gains suggested tight supply had kept consumer demand pent up during the summer months, when sales dipped significantly.
“Buyers are having more success lately despite low inventory and prices that continue to swiftly rise above incomes,” Mr Yun said in a statement, noting that low mortgage rates had also supported demand.
“The good news is that the tightening labour market is beginning to push up wages and the economy has lately shown signs of greater expansion and durability.”
Total inventory for the month fell 0.5pc to 2.02 million homes for sale, down 4.3pc over the same point last year and marking a steady decline.
The Commerce Department reported last week that new home construction starts were up sharply for October at 25.5pc.
Mr Yun said the gain in housing starts was a sign that supply could rise enough to give buyers choices while maintaining moderate price growth. –