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Financial News: U.S. New Home Sales Unexpectedly Plunge 3.4% In

U.S. New Home Sales Unexpectedly Plunge 3.4% In August

09/26/2017 - 10:22:00 (RTTNews)

(RTTNews) - New home sales in the U.S. unexpectedly showed a sharp decrease in the month of August, according to a report released by the Commerce Department on Tuesday.

The Commerce Department said new home sales tumbled by 3.4 percent to an annual rate of 560,000 in August from the revised July rate of 580,000.

The decline surprised economists, who had expected new home sales to climb to a rate of 583,000 from the 571,000 originally reported for the previous month.

The unexpected decrease in new home sales reflected a notable decline in sales in the South, which plunged by 4.7 percent.

New home sales in the West and Northeast also slumped by 2.7 percent and 2.6 percent, respectively, while new home sales in the Midwest were virtually unchanged.

The report also said the median sales price of new homes sold in August was $300,200, down 6.2 percent from $319,900 in July but up 0.4 percent from $298,900 in the same month a year ago.

The Commerce Department said there were an estimated 284,000 houses for sale at the end of August, representing 6.1 months of supply at the current sales rate.

Last Wednesday, the National Association of Realtors released a report showing an unexpected decrease in existing home sales in the month of August.

NAR said existing home sales slumped by 1.7 percent to an annual rate of 5.35 million in August after tumbling by 1.3 percent to a rate of 5.44 million in July.

The continued decrease surprised economists, who had expected existing home sales to edge up to an annual rate of 5.46 million.

With the unexpected decrease, existing home sales fell to their lowest annual rate since hitting 5.34 million last August.

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