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US new housing sales are rising to nearly 1½ years high

Sales of new US single-family homes increased to nearly 1½ years high in March, which increased by lower mortgage loans and house prices.

The Ministry of Commerce said on Tuesday the new home sales rose 4.5 percent to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 692,000 units last month, the highest level since November 2017.

That was the third straight monthly increase in new home sales. The fund's sales rate was revised down to 662,000 units from the previously reported 667,000 units.

Economists polled by Reuters had forecast new home sales, which accounted for about 11.7 percent of the housing market sales, declined 2.5 percent to a pace of 650,000 units in March.

New home sales are deducted from the permit and tend to be volatile for one month to month. They increased 3.0 percent from a year ago. The median house price fell 9.7 percent to $ 302,700 in March a year ago, the lowest level since February 201


New housing sales have not been significantly affected by supply problems that have plagued the market for previously owned housing. A report in Monday showed that housing sales tumbled in March, balanced by a permanent shortage of cheaper houses.

Despite the larger housing market's struggle with supply, the basis for housing is improved. The 30-year fixed rate has fallen by about 80 basis points since November, according to data from the Mortgage Finance Agency Freddie Mac. It followed a recent decision by the Federal Reserve to suspend its three-year monetary policy austerity campaign.

In addition, house price inflation has slowed down and wage growth has increased. Land and labor crimes, however, limit the client's ability to break more ground on lower housing projects. Investment in housing construction procured 0.3 percent in 2018, the largest decrease since 2010.

New housing sales in the south, which accounts for most of the transactions, increased 3.6 percent in March to their highest level since July 2007. Sales in the Midwest increased 17.6 percent, while those in the West increased by 6.7 percent. But sales in the northeast tumbled 22.2 percent.

There were 344,000 new homes on the market last month, down 0.3 percent from February. At the March sales rate, it would take 6.0 months to clear the supply of houses in the market, from 6.3 months in February.

About 62 percent of the houses sold last month were either under construction or still built. [19659012]
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