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MNI DATA IMPACT: US Nov Pending Home Sales Below Expected

MNI (Washington)

U.S. pending home sales fell 2.6% in November, below expectations for a flat reading and marking the third straight month of decline, the National Association of Realtors reported Wednesday. Still, the group's Pending Homes Sales Index reached an all-time high for November of 125.7.

"The latest monthly decline is largely due to the shortage of inventory and fast-rising home prices," NAR chief economist Lawrence Yun said in a statement. "It is important to keep in mind that the current sales and prices are far stronger than a year ago."

Monthly contract activity slipped in all four major sales regions, the NAR said, but each region saw gains in year-over-year activity. Nationally, contract signings were up 16.4% from one year ago.

The outlook for the housing market in 2021 is favorable, Yun said, predicting a slight increase in mortgage rates to 3% from the current 2.7% and a 10% increase in existing home sales. New home sales should grow by 20% next year, he said.

"Economic growth is guaranteed from the stimulus package and from vaccine distribution, but high government borrowing will put modest upward pressure on interest rates," he said.

MNI Washington Bureau | +1 202-371-2121 |
MNI Washington Bureau | +1 202-371-2121 |

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