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Thursday, July 23, 2009

Existing Home Sales (and Prices) Rise in June

This morning's announcement showed relative strength not only in sales, but importantly in price. A lot of this is "addition by the elimination of subtraction" due to less forced sales and more participants biting the bullet with the realization that the price of their home is down, but good news none-the-less (distressed sales accounted for 31% of all sales in June vs. 50% in March).

Additional details from Marketwatch:
Resales of U.S. single-family homes and condos rose 3.6% in June to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 4.89 million, the highest level since last October, the National Association of Realtors reported Thursday. Resales have risen for three straight months. The housing market appears to be healing, said Lawrence Yun, the NAR chief economist. The increase was higher than expected.
Economists surveyed by MarketWatch expected sales to rise to 4.85 million. Inventories of unsold homes are still elevated and putting pressure on prices. The inventory of unsold homes on the market fell to a 9.4 month supply at the June sales pace, down from 9.8 months in May. Yun said that inventories would have to be at a 7 month supply to get price stabilization. The median sales prices fell 15.4% in the past year to $181,800.