Friday, March 23, 2007

Existing Home Sales Hit 3-Year High

Existing Home Sales for February rose to 6.69M versus estimates of 6.30M and 6.44M in January.
BOTTOM LINE: Sales of previously owned homes in the US unexpectedly rose 3.9%, the biggest monthly gain in almost three years, a sign the housing market is recovering even as lending standards tighten, Bloomberg said. Lower prices and low interest rates are boosting demand for homes. The median home prices fell 1.3%, from a year ago, to $212,800. Existing home inventories rose to 6.7 month’s supply at the current sales pace from 6.6 months the prior month. Purchases rose 14.2% in the Northeast, 3.9% in the Midwest and 1.6% in the South. Purchases fell slightly in the West. I continue to believe housing sales are stabilizing at relatively high levels and that home construction will remain subdued throughout the year as homebuilders work down excess inventory.

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