Nationally existing home sales dipped 0.6 percent month-over-month to an annual rate of 5.02 million units, the National Association of Realtors said on Tuesday. The drop last month was a touch less than market expectations for a fall to 5.0 million units. The data showed weakness at a crucial time for the housing market with the Federal Reserve due to wind up its program to buy mortgage-related securities. The program pushed home loan rates to record lows and helped the market slowly recover from a three-year slump.
Analysts were disturbed by the first rise in inventories in seven months and the jump in the months’ worth of supply to its highest level since August.
“It says to me not to expect significant price gains in the near term. We are looking at flat house prices this year on average, not every month, part of it is this overhang of supply,” said Craig Thomas, senior economist at PNC Financial Services in Pittsburgh.
U.S. stocks ignored the rise in inventories, surging on relief that the drop in sales was less than forecast. Both the Dow Jones industrial average .DJI and the Standard & Poor’s 500 Index .SPX jumped to 18-month closing highs.
Why is it that Manhattan is different? Is Manhattan a separate economy? We are experiencing multiple bids on many properties. Increased activity across the board. Is our little part of the world differnet? It appears so….