Our Terms of Service and Privacy Policy have changed.

By continuing to use this site, you are agreeing to the new Privacy Policy and Terms of Service.

New home sales in slow recovery

By Charles Riley, staff reporter


NEW YORK (CNNMoney.com) -- New home sales edged higher in September, according to government figures reported Wednesday, but the recovery from the all-time lows reached earlier this year remained slow.

Sales of newly built single-family homes rose to an annual rate of 307,000 units in September from 288,000 units the month before, the Commerce Department said.

The sales figure was higher that the annual rate of 299,000 expected by analysts surveyed by Briefing.com.

But the modest increase does not give "too much cause for hope," according to Celia Chen, a senior director at Moody's Analytics.

"Sales did rise which is good, but the pace is still very weak," Chen said. "It's still close to a record low. It just doesn't seem that demand is really firming."

The August sales were the third-lowest level since the Commerce Department started tracking new home sales in 1963, trailing only the 282,000 rate reported in May, and 285,000 in July.

The government said the median sales price of new homes was $223,800, up from $220,500 the month before.

That was one bright spot, according to Chen, but it might have had more to do with limited inventory than increased demand.

"There are not many of them [new homes] on the market, and inventories are very tight. Builders have just not been putting up a lot of homes," Chen said.

At the end of September, 204,000 new homes were for sale, equal to an 8-month supply at the latest pace.

A separate report issued Monday by the National Association of Realtors indicated that existing home sales climbed for the second month in a row in September. To top of page

Index Last Change % Change
Dow 18,366.88 -81.53 -0.44%
Nasdaq 5,201.77 -10.43 -0.20%
S&P 500 2,164.11 -8.36 -0.38%
Treasuries 1.63 0.06 3.55%
Data as of 3:02pm ET
Company Price Change % Change
Bank of America Corp... 15.70 0.17 1.09%
Chesapeake Energy Co... 6.36 0.04 0.55%
Freeport-McMoRan Inc... 10.82 -0.27 -2.39%
Apple Inc 106.63 -0.94 -0.87%
Micron Technology In... 16.34 0.14 0.86%
Data as of 2:47pm ET
Sponsors

Sections

Walmart capitalizes on the "'insane' popularity of Patti LaBelle sweet potato pie with five new desserts. More

On Friday Janet Yellen reiterated again that the government has to spend more during crises. Both Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump want to boost spending. More

The latest focus point in Hillary Clinton's long email controversy may be a little-known tool for freeing up computer storage space. More

Tesla started building its massive Gigafactory in June 2014. Since then, home prices in the nearby market have risen faster than the national average. More