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Monday, March 21, 2011

U.S. February Existing Home Sales Fall to 4.88 Million Rate

In this article the Wells Fargo group stated that 8 to 9 months of inventory is normal for a stable housing market.  However, 6 months is closer to the norm.  In addition, pending on data and analysis there are 6 to 8 million homes in the foreclosure process that will coming on the market.  Finally, banks have been unable to foreclose homes do the foreclosure gate scandal, the foreclosure homes haven't been place on the market, since December it creates false low inventory number.
Sales of U.S. previously owned homes dropped more than forecast in February and the median purchase price declined to the lowest since April 2002, indicating the housing market is struggling to recover.
Purchases decreased 9.6 percent to a 4.88 million annual rate, less than the 5.13 million median forecast of economists surveyed by Bloomberg News, figures from the National Association of Realtors showed today in Washington. The median price declined 5.2 percent from a year earlier, and 39 percent of the sales were distressed properties.
Foreclosures are adding to the glut of distressed properties and pressuring prices, leaving some Americans with bigger mortgages than their homes are worth as joblessness hovers near 9 percent. The figures underscore the Federal Reserve’s view that the housing market “continues to be depressed” even as the rest of the economy improves. 
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