Author: Jacob Passy

New home sales decline in March

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U.S. new-home sales decreased 8.6% to an annual rate of 763,000 in March, the government said Tuesday. That figure represents the quantity of homes that would be sold over a yearlong period of time if the same number of properties were bought each month based on the rate of sales in March. Compared to a year ago, sales were down 12.6%. Economists polled by MarketWatch expected new-home sales in March to drop to an annual rate of 770,000.

Home prices rose at breakneck pace in February, Case-Shiller report shows

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The S&P CoreLogic Case-Shiller 20-city price index posted a 20.2% year-over-year gain in February, up markedly from 18.9% the previous month. On a monthly basis, the index increased 2.4% between January and February. Meanwhile, the Case-Shiller national home price index increased 19.8% between February 2021 and February, up from the previous month. This represented the third-largest pace of home-price appreciation in the Case-Shiller report’s history.

Existing-home sales fall for second consecutive month amid rising mortgage rates

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Existing-home sales decreased 2.7% between February and March, dropping to a seasonally-adjusted, annual rate of 5.77 million, the National Association of Realtors said Wednesday. Compared to a year ago, sales were down 4.5%. Economists polled by MarketWatch had projected existing-home sales to come in at 5.75 million.

Housing starts rise despite surging mortgage rates

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U.S. home builders started construction on homes at a seasonally-adjusted annual rate of roughly 1.79 million in March, representing a 0.3% increase from the upwardly-revised figures for the previous month, the U.S. Census Bureau reported Tuesday. Compared with March 2021, housing starts were up nearly 4%. Meanwhile, permitting for new homes occurred at a seasonally-adjusted annual rate of roughly 1.87 million, up 0.4% from February and 6.7% from a year ago. Economists polled by MarketWatch had expected housing starts to occur at a median pace of 1.73 million and building permits to come in at a median pace of 1.82 million.

Fed raises possibility of future mortgage-backed securities sales in FOMC minutes

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The Federal Reserve eventually could resort to selling off mortgage-backed securities on its balance sheet, according to the minutes of the central bank’s last strategy session in March. During the March meeting, Fed officials reviewed the results of the central bank’s previous efforts at shrinking its balance sheet between 2017 and 2019. Amid the COVID-19 crisis, the Federal Reserve purchased billions of dollars’ worth of mortgage-backed securities as part of its broader efforts toward economic stimulus. The Fed has since stopped making those purchases and signaled plans to shrink its balance sheet of mortgage bonds, either through the securities maturing or prepayments. With mortgage rates increasing, the volume of refinances has shrunk considerably. In that context, some Fed officials suggested it “will be appropriate” to consider MBS sales in the future to rid the bank’s balance sheet of the securities. Any decision to that effect “would be announced well in advance,” the minutes noted.

New home sales dip in February

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U.S. new-home sales decreased 2% to an annual rate of 772,000 in February, the government said Wednesday. That figure represents the number of homes that would be sold over a yearlong period of time if the same number of properties were bought each month based on the rate of sales in February. Compared to a year earlier, sales were down more than 6%. Economists polled by MarketWatch expected new-home sales in February to drop to an annual rate of 805,000.

Existing-home sales decline as affordability constraints worsen

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Existing-home sales decreased 7.2% between January and February, falling to a seasonally-adjusted, annual rate of 6.02 million, the National Association of Realtors said Friday. Compared to a year ago, sales were down more than 2%. Economists polled by MarketWatch had projected existing-home sales to come in at 6.13 million.

Housing starts climb, but home builders are growing more cautious with new projects

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U.S. home builders started construction on homes at a seasonally-adjusted annual rate of roughly 1.77 million in February, representing a 6.8% increase from the revised figures for the previous month, the U.S. Census Bureau reported Thursday. Compared with February 2021, housing starts were up 22%. Meanwhile, permitting for new homes occurred at a seasonally-adjusted annual rate of roughly 1.86 million, down 1.9% from January. Nevertheless, permitting activity was up 7.7% from a year ago. Economists polled by MarketWatch had expected housing starts to occur at a median pace of 1.7 million and building permits to come in at a median pace of 1.85 million.

Existing-home sales defy expectations, rising higher to kick off 2022

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Existing-home sales increased by nearly 7% between December and January, hitting a seasonally-adjusted, annual rate of 6.5 million, the National Association of Realtors said Friday. Economists polled by MarketWatch expected the pace of home sales to come in at 6.1 million. Compared to a year ago, sales were down more than 2%. The inventory of homes for sale dropped to another record low, as the median price for an existing home rose by more than 15% on an annual basis.

Existing-home sales defy expectations, rising higher to kick off 2022

This post was originally published on this site

Existing-home sales increased by nearly 7% between December and January, hitting a seasonally-adjusted, annual rate of 6.5 million, the National Association of Realtors said Friday. Economists polled by MarketWatch expected the pace of home sales to come in at 6.1 million. Compared to a year ago, sales were down more than 2%. The inventory of homes for sale dropped to another record low, as the median price for an existing home rose by more than 15% on an annual basis.