Economic Snapshot: New home sales up nearly 30 percent from 2015

Sales of new single-family houses were at a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 593,000 in September 2016. This is 3.1 percent above the revised August rate of 575,000 and 29.8 percent above the September 2015 estimate of 457,000.

The median sales price of new houses sold in September 2016 was $313,500 and the average sales price was $377,700. The seasonally adjusted estimate of new houses for sale at the end of September was 235,000, which represents a supply of 4.8 months at the current sales rate.

Consumer confidence

Consumer confidence declined in October to 98.6, down from 103.5 in September when the index was at its highest since the Great Recession.

The Present Situation Index decreased from 127.9 to 120.6 and the Expectations Index declined from 87.2 to 83.9.

Consumers saying business conditions are “good” decreased moderately from 27.7 percent to 26.2 percent and those saying business conditions are “bad” increased from 15.8 percent to 17.7 percent. Consumers stating jobs are “plentiful” decreased from 27.6 percent to 24.3 percent; however, those claiming jobs are “hard to get” also declined marginally from 22.3 percent to 22.1 percent.

The percentage of consumers expecting business conditions to improve over the next six months decreased from 17.0 percent to 16.0 percent and those expecting business conditions to worsen increased from 10.8 percent to 12.2 percent.

The proportion of consumers expecting more jobs in the months ahead decreased from 15.7 percent to 13.1 percent. However, those anticipating fewer jobs also declined from 18.1 percent to 17.0 percent. The percentage of consumers expecting an increase to their incomes was unchanged at 17.5 percent and those expecting a decrease declined from 10.4 percent to 9.8 percent.

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