Get Ready, Tomorrow's Existing Home Sales Are Still Going To Look Awful

From housing economist Tom Lawler (existing home sales will be released tomorrow):

Based on the data I have seen so far, I estimate that existing home sales ran at a seasonally adjusted annual rate of around 4.46 million homes, down 1.5% from September’s pace, and down 25.4% from last October’s “tax-credit-goosed” pace. The YOY decline in unadjusted sales will be larger than that for seasonally adjusted sales for “calendar” reasons (including the fact that this October had one fewer business day than last October).

The local realtor/MLS inventory numbers I’ve seen have on aggregate been broadly consistent with the 3.2% national drop in active listings from September to October on, though the local realtor numbers suggest that the NAR’s estimate may show a somewhat greater decline – perhaps closer to -3.7%(The NAR does not use national listings, but instead uses listings from its sample of local MLS/associations/boards).

A 3.7% decline in inventory (from September) would put inventory at 3.89 million. Based on this estimate, the months-of-supply in October was around 10.4 months.

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