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**MNI: 5 Things We Learned From New Residential Sales Data>

By Holly Stokes and Sara Haire
     WASHINGTON (MNI) - The following are the key points from the 
December new residential sales data released Thursday by the 
Commerce Department: 
     -December new home sales saw a 9.3% decrease to 625k SAAR, well 
below the 679k expected. However, new home sales were up 14.1% 
year-over-year on a seasonally adjusted basis, indicating new home sales 
continue to trend higher. New homes sold on a year-over-year basis 
unadjusted saw a rise of 10.3%.   
     -The median new home sales price rose 0.1% to $335,400, while the 
average sales price rose to $398,900, making these both the highest on 
record since the series start in January 1963     
     -Unable to keep up with November's outstanding growth, sales saw 
declines in all regions. The South saw a 9.8% decrease to 331k, the 
largest percentage decrease since March 2015. The West fell 9.5% to 
190k, the Northeast saw a 2.4% fall to 41k, and the Midwest fell 10.0% 
rise to 63k. 
     - November's new home sales were revised down to a still strong 
689k from the 733k previously reported. 
     -New homes for sale at the end of the period saw a 3.9% increase to 
295k. This is the highest level seen since April 2009. Because of the 
increase in homes for sale and the decline in sales of new homes, the 
months' supply on the market rose 16.3% to 5.7 months from 4.9 months in 
           ** MNI Washington Bureau: 202-371-2121 ** 

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