December new U.S. home sales fall 7.3%
WASHINGTON (MarketWatch) — Sales of new single-family homes fell in December, while less volatile longer-term trends showed continued improvement, according to data released Friday by the U.S. Department of Commerce. Sales of new single-family homes fell 7.3% to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 369,000 in December. Economists polled by MarketWatch had forecast new-home sales to hit 385,000 in December. Despite December’s decline, sales rose 8.8% from the same period in the prior year. The sales rate in November was revised up to 398,000 from a prior estimate of 377,000. The median price of new homes rose 1.3% to 8,900 in December. The supply of new homes available for purchase rose to 4.9 months in December at the current sales rate from 4.5 months in November. The median sales price increased 13.9% from the prior year’s period. For all of 2012, the government estimated that 367,000 new homes were sold, the highest level since 2009. The median sales price for 2012 reached 3,600, the highest since 2007.
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