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The Week Ahead: Spotlight on Home Sales

On Wednesday, the National Association of Realtors (NAR) will release its data on existing home sales for October. The report highlights statistics related to national and regional existing home sales and includes data for 12 months and annual totals going back three years.

The sales for existing homes stagnated in August before declining in September by 3.4 percent from the prior month. The report for September revealed that existing home sales were down 4.1 percent from a year ago to 5.15 million from 5.37 million in September 2017. Rising rates had led to a decline in sales across the country according to Lawrence Yun, Chief Economist at NAR. "This is the lowest existing home sales level since November 2015," he said. "A decade’s high mortgage rates are preventing consumers from making quick decisions on home purchases. All the while, affordable home listings remain low, continuing to spur underperforming sales activity across the country."

The report noted that the median existing-home price for all housing types in September was $258,100, up 4.2 percent from September 2017 ($247,600). September’s price increase marks the 79th straight month of year-over-year gains. Total housing inventory at the end of September decreased from 1.91 million in August to 1.88 million existing homes available for sale and was up from 1.86 million a year ago. Unsold inventory stood at a 4.4-month supply at the current sales pace, up from 4.3 in August and 4.2 months a year ago.

Here's what else is in store in the week ahead:

  • NAHB Housing Market Index, Monday, 10 a.m. EST
  • Census Bureau Housing Starts, Tuesday, 8:30 a.m. EST
  • MBA Mortgage Apps, Wednesday, 7 a.m. EST
  • First American Loan Application Defect Index

About Author: Radhika Ojha

Radhika Ojha is an independent writer and copy-editor, and a reporter for DS News. She is a graduate of the University of Pune, India, where she received her B.A. in Commerce with a concentration in Accounting and Marketing and an M.A. in Mass Communication. Upon completion of her masters degree, Ojha worked at a national English daily publication in India (The Indian Express) where she was a staff writer in the cultural and arts features section. Ojha, also worked as Principal Correspondent at HT Media Ltd and at Honeywell as an executive in corporate communications. She and her husband currently reside in Houston, Texas.
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