US Single Family Home Sales Missed, Economy Weakens
$DIA, $SPY, $QQQ, $VXX
New US single-family home sales unexpectedly fell in March, the decline was concentrated in the West region, suggesting that the housing market is weakening.
The US Commerce Department said Monday new home sales decreased 1.5% to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 511,000 units. February’s sales pace was revised up to 519,000 units from the previously reported 512,000 units.
Sales rose a bit in the Midwest and South, declined in the West and were Unchanged in the Northeast.
Economists polled had forecast new home sales, which account for about 8.7% of the housing market, rising to a 520,000 unit-rate last month.
New home sales are volatile M-M, they are a Key element in the overall economic growth picture in the US.
The decline in sales over the past 3 months may signal a slowdown in the housing market.
A report last week showed a 5.1% rise in sales of previously owned homes in March.
The US has broadly weak economy, with data such as trade, industrial production, business spending and retail sales suggesting the economy lost considerable momentum in Q-1 after logging a 1.4% annualized growth rate in Q-4 of y 2015.
US Q-1 GDP estimates are as low as a 0.3%. The government will release the advance 1st Q-1 GDP estimate Thursday.
Last month, the inventory of new homes on the market rose 2.1% to 246,000 units, the highest since September 2009. Despite the increase, new housing stock remains less than 50% of what it was at the height of housing market.
At March’s sales pace it would take 5.8 months to clear the supply of houses on the market. That was the most since last September and was up from 5.6 months in February.
Sales dove 23.6% in the West, reversing February’s 21.7% rise. The West has seen a sharp increase in home prices amid tight inventories.
Monday, US major stock market indexes finished at: DJIA -26.64 at 17977.11, NAS Comp -10.44 at 4895.79, S&P 500 -3.79 at 2087.79
Volume: trade came in at about average with nearly 861-M/shares exchanged on the NYSE
- DJIA +3.2% YTD
- S&P 500 +2.2% YTD
- Russell 2000 +0.1% YTD
- NAS Comp -2.2% YTD
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