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Homebuilder Investors Losing Confidence After Surprise Decline In Existing Home Sales

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Homebuilder Investors Losing Confidence After Surprise Decline In Existing Home Sales

The National Association of Realtors reported an extremely disappointing U.S. existing home sales number for the month of February Monday morning. Home sales reportedly dropped 7.1 percent to an annual rate of only 5.08 million units, well off the 2.8 percent decline that economists were expecting.

The sharp decline in the U.S. housing market could be a troubling sign that the U.S. economic resiliency during a weak global period may not be a strong as some had hoped. The weak housing number is major contrast to strong U.S. employment data and factory output stabilization.

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The Northeast housing market was hit particularly hard during February, with sales falling 17.1 percent.

Despite the relatively weak month, February home sales remained up 2.2 percent year-over-year (Y/Y). In addition, the median home price is up 4.4 percent Y/Y to $210,800.

The number of unsold homes on the U.S. market came in at 1.88 million units in February. That number represents a 3.3 percent increase over January’s number, but a 1.1 percent decrease Y/Y.

The S&P 500 initially sold off on Monday following the weak housing news. Shares of William Lyon Homes (NYSE: WLH), D.R. Horton, Inc. (NYSE: DHI), Beazer Homes USA, Inc. (NYSE: BZH) and Toll Brothers Inc (NYSE: TOL) were all down in mid-day trading.

Disclosure: The author holds no position in the stocks mentioned.

Image Credit: Public Domain

Posted-In: National Association of RealtorsLong Ideas News Econ #s Markets Trading Ideas Real Estate Best of Benzinga

 

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