Pending home sales rose 5.3% in June, up from a revised 4.7% contraction the month prior and comfortably exceeding the consensus estimate of -1.0%. This was down 12.3% year-over-year, which is a modest uptick from last month’s 14% decline.
This report, combined with some early but positive signs in New Home Sales and Existing Home Sales, suggests that the rate at which the housing market is getting worse is beginning to ease. Importantly, this is not “the bottom.” It is likely the start of a bottoming process. Prices won’t likely stop declining until late 2009 at the earliest, and then they’ll likely take years to recover.