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Existing home sales plunge in April

Akin Oyedele
real estate houses sale sign

(Justin Sullivan/Getty)
Existing home sales unexpectedly fell in April.

Sales fell 3.3% month-over-month to an annualized rate of 5.04 million.

Economists had expected sales of +0.8% month-on-month to an annualized rate of 5.23 million, according to Bloomberg.

In March, existing home sales rose 6.1% to an annualized rate of 5.19 million – the fastest pace of growth in 18 months. The reading was revised to 5.21 million.

Existing home sales include completed transactions on single-family homes, townhomes, condominiums, and co-ops.

Lawrence Yun, chief economist at the National Association of Realtors, wrote in the release: "April's setback is the result of lagging supply relative to demand and the upward pressure it's putting on prices. However, the overall data and feedback we're hearing from Realtors® continues to point to elevated levels of buying interest compared to a year ago."

Single-family home sales fell 3.7% to an annualized rate of 4.43 million. The rate of sales on existing condos and co-ops was unchanged from March at 610,000, and 3.4% higher year-over-year.

The share of first-time buyers was at 30% in April, unchanged from March.

On Tuesday, we got data showing that housing starts surged 20.2% in April to an annualized pace of 1.135 million, the highest level since November 2007.

More to come ...

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