I’ve been on calls all morning, didn’t get a chance to follow up with the New Home Sales. Here are some highlights from the data:
• February 2008 saw a drop of 1.8% from January 2008 (±15.0%) in terms
of seasonally adjusted, annualized data; This was not a statistically
significant number, given the margin of error.
• Year-over-year, the drop
was 29.8% below the February 2007 data (±9.6% means this is
• Sales have fallen four months in a row
• The Median and Average sales price of new houses in February 2008 was $244,100 and $296,400 respectively. Median sales price fell 2.7% in the past year to $244,100.
• Sales of new homes in the United States fell to a 13-year low
• Sales figures are overstate due to the omission of the "ballooning number of sales that have been
• February’s supply of new homes on the market hit a 27-year high; Inventories are likely understated, also because of cancellations.
• The pace of sales has slowed, leading Inventory
represented a 9.8-month supply at the February sales rate, unchanged
from January and the highest since 1981.
• The number of completed homes for sale fell for the second straight
month, standing at 188,000 after peaking in December at 197,000.
• A few pieces of encouraging data: The number of homes on the market dropped by 2.1% to 471,000, the
lowest since July 2005. Also, s ales in January and December were revised modestly higher;
Check out the two charts below: I particularly like the cool chart from Brian Jacobs, pricing Median Home Prices in terms of Gold (ounces):
Courtesy of Barron’s Econoday
NEW RESIDENTIAL SALES IN FEBRUARY 2008
Commerce Dept, March 26, 2008
New-home sales fall to 13-year low
MarketWatch, 10:53 a.m. EDT March 26, 2008
A few other data points to note when considering the monthly changes (our earlier NAR Spin discussion): > 1) February 2009 was a leap year — the month had an extra day, and without that I sincerely doubt we would have seen any gain (I wonder how they adjusted for that). > 2) The Composite…Read More
One of themes we’ve looked at over the years is the spin that some trade groups put out on top of their data releases. Some Trade Associations, like the ATA tonnage index, or the Home Builders Index, simply put out the straight dope — an unvarnished, unblinking look at their industries, so their members can…Read More