KEY MARKET INDICATORS as of Mar 27, 2017
February Home Sales
Existing Home Sales – After reaching the highest level in 10 years in January, existing home sales declined 3.7% m/m to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 5.48 million units in February. Nationally, existing home sales were flat from a year ago. Housing inventory increased 4% in February as the housing market geared up for the spring home-selling season. But homes available for sale remained 6% below the level from a year ago. Housing supply remained very tight with unsold inventory representing just 3.8 months of supply. Home prices should continue to increase. Despite the pull-back in February, we expect existing home sales to rebound in March. For the first quarter, we expect existing home sales to grow by around 3% y/y, or a seasonally adjusted annual rate of around 5.5 million units. Mortgage applications for home purchases in the past 5-6 weeks, a leading indicator for home sales in the second quarter, have been running at around 4% ahead of last year’s pace, or close to 5.7 million units. This points to a stronger spring home-selling season.
New Home Sales – New home sales increased 6.1% m/m to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 592,000 units in February. Compared to a year ago, new home sales were up 8.9%. Regionally, West and Midwest regions reported positive year-over-year growth. But sales in the South and in the North