Existing Home Sales Bounce Back in August - WBOC-TV 16, Delmarvas News Leader, FOX 21 -

Existing Home Sales Bounce Back in August


NEW YORK (CNN)- Existing home sales bounced back in August after plunging in the previous month.

Sales of previously-owned homes rose 7.6 percent to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 4.13 million units last month, the National Association of Realtors reported Thursday. That's up from up from 3.84 million in July.

Analysts had expected sales to edge up to an annual rate of 4.10 million units, according to consensus estimates from Briefing.com.

The gain in August was a welcome change, following on the heels of a dismal report in the previous month, which showed that home sales sank 27 percent to the lowest level in 15 years in July.

But a single upbeat reading doesn't mean home sales have recovered, said Lawrence Yun, NAR chief economist.

"Despite very attractive affordability conditions, a housing market recovery will likely be slow and gradual because of lingering economic uncertainty," said Yun.

After steadily rising in previous months, the inventory of homes on the market edged down 0.6  percent in August to 3.98 million units. But that's enough supply to last 11.6 months, NAR said.

The decline in inventory helped to boost home prices. The median price of homes sold in August was $178,600, up 0.8 percent from a year ago, the report showed. About a third of homes sold during the month were in foreclosure.

"Home values have shown stabilizing trends over the past year, even as the economy shed millions of jobs, because of the home buyer tax credit stimulus," said Yun. "Now that the economy is adding some jobs, the housing market needs to steadily improve and eventually stand on its own."


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