​Existing Home Sales Edge Down, Prices Rise Slightly​​

April 23, 2021

Existing Home Sales Edge Down, Prices Rise - As home prices rise slightly, existing sales have edged down a bit, pointing to some slowdown in the real estate market recovery pace as overall economic activity cools.

Existing Home Sales Edge Down, Prices Rise

The National Association of Realtors said on Monday existing home sales slipped 0.6 percent last month to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 4.92 million units.

Economists polled by Reuters had expected home resales to rise to a 5.01 million-unit rate.

“The disappointing pace of home sales provides some evidence that positive momentum in the housing sector is beginning to leak lower,” said Millan Mulraine, a senior economist at TD Securities in New York.

Still, the housing market recovery that has helped boost the economy remains intact, and there is some evidence the slowdown in sales may represent supply constraints more than crimped demand.

Sales in March were 10.3 percent higher than the same month last year, and the median price for a home resale was up 11.8 percent, the biggest increase since November 2005, to $184,300.

“The report suggests that the overall thrust of the sector remains positive, with the demand and supply dynamics continuing to favor further price gains,” said Mulraine.

The data added to other reports such as employment and factory activity suggesting a loss of momentum in the economy as the first quarter ended.

U.S. stocks were mixed as corporate earnings pointed to an uncertain growth outlook. Prices for U.S. Treasury debt rose to session highs on the data as it was seen as confirmation of some slowing in U.S. economic growth.