by Christopher Freeburn | July 25, 2012 12:50 pm
The Commerce Department announced this morning that new home sales dropped sharply in June.
The seasonally adjusted annual sales rate for new homes declined 8.4% last month to 350,000 units, compared to May. An annual rate of 700,000 home sales is considered historically “healthy” for the housing market.
June’s drop marked the largest monthly decline since February 2011, the Associated Press noted.
Last month’s sales pace was still 15.1% better than June 2011.
The median sales price of a new home dipped 1.9% to $232,600 last month.
Inventories of new homes for sale rose slightly to 144,000 units in June, up from 143,000 in May. May’s number was the lowest new home inventory since 1963.
The news didn’t help home builder stocks. Shares of Ryland (NYSE:RYL) and Toll Brothers (NYSE:TOL) fell more than 2% in Wednesday afternoon trading, while D.R. Horton (NYSE:DHI) shares slid more than 1%.
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