The Econoday consensus estimate of 602,000 units missed the mark badly, but there was an upward revision in March.
Sales of newly constructed homes lost momentum in April, reversing three straight months of gains. The Census Bureau and the Department of Housing and Urban Development said sales were down 11.4 percent from March to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 569,000, and barely eked out an 0.5 percent gain from the April 2016 estimate of 566,000 units.
There was one positive note. Sales in March were revised upward significantly; from 621,000 to 642,000. The pushed March ahead of last July, to being the strongest month since the housing crisis began.
Sales in the Northeast were down 7.5 percent from March and 5.1 percent compared to April 2016. The Midwest saw sales decline by 13.1 percent for the month, but were 19.7 percent higher than a year earlier
In the South, month-over-month sales were down by 4.0 percent, but sales rose 4.1 percent from the previous April. The West took the biggest hit, down 26.3 percent and 13.7 percent for the two periods.
New Home Sales 1963-Present
The above chart puts the strength of the recovery in proper perspective.
Mike “Mish” Shedlock