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REPEAT: MNI DATA ANALYSIS: US Dec Home Sales -9.3% To 625k SAAR>

Repeats Story Initially Transmitted at 15:00 GMT Jan 24/10:00 EST Jan 24
--Dec Months' Supply Up 16.3% To 5.7 Months vs 4.9 in Nov  
--Dec Median and Average Sales Price Highest on Record
--Dec New Homes For Sale +3.9% to 295k; Highest Since Apr 2009
By Sara Haire and Holly Stokes
     WASHINGTON (MNI) - The pace of new single-family home sales 
decreased by 9.3% to 625k. This follows a downward revision to the sales 
pace in November and October, data released by the Commerce Department 
Thursday showed. 
     The sales pace came in well below expectations of 679,000, based on 
an MNI survey of economists.  
     The supply of new homes for sale was up 3.9% to 295,000 in 
December. Based on the movements in sales and supply in December, the 
months' supply rose 16.3%, the largest percentage increase since July 
2013, to 5.7 months from 4.9 months in November, above the 5.6 months 
supply a year ago. 
     Despite the supply of new homes rising, the median sales price 
saw a 0.1% increase to $335,400, making it the highest on record since 
the series start in January 1963. The average sales price also saw a 
rise to $398,900, also the highest on record.
     Sales declined in all regions, with the South being the most 
notable, seeing a 9.8% fall to 331k, the largest percentage decrease 
since March 2015. Sales fell 9.5% in the West to 190k, while the 
Northeast saw a 2.4% decrease to 41k, and the Midwest saw a decline of 
10.0% to 63k.    
     New home sales in November were revised down to a 689,000 rate from 
the 733,000 rate previously reported, while October sales were revised 
down to a 599,000 rate from the 624,000 pace previously reported.  
             ** MNI Washington Bureau (202) 371-2121 ** 

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