Another sign that the housing market is finally getting less bad:
Bloomberg: Purchases of new homes in the U.S. climbed 11 per cent in June, the biggest gain in eight years, adding to evidence the slump that began in 2005 is stabilizing.
Sales increased to a 384,000 pace, higher than any forecast of economists surveyed by Bloomberg News and the most since November, figures from the Commerce Department showed to day in Washington. The number of houses on the market dropped to the lowest level in more than a decade.
Sure, you can apply some asterisks if you want. There’s the $8,000 tax credit. Bernanke is snapping up mortgages, and all the old GSEs are revving at full strength. And, as noted below, there’s the non-seasonally adjusted data. But the numbers are now coming in better than expected.
(And, yes, we’re aware that June is seasonally stronger than May. But the year-over-year decline improved a lot, too. And the point is that the numbers were significantly better than expected).
Richard Moody for Forward Capital summarizes the data and adds some caveats: