The National Association of Realtors released data on Existing Home sales in the U.S. for the month of June. Figures show a decline in sales to the lowest level in seven months, attributed to a sluggish housing industry affected by rising unemployment and foreclosures.
Less home buyers signed purchase contracts on previously owned homes compared to May. June recorded 4.77 million sales, less than the forecasted 4.92 million, and dropping from May’s 4.81 million.
The median sales price was $166,500, down 4.6% from $174,600 a year earlier. Inventories increased, more contracts were cancelled and 30 percent of transactions last month were of distressed dwellings, the figures showed.
In his speech last week, Federal Reserve Chairman Ben mentioned the decline in consumer confidence and an increasing jobless rate are impeding consumer expenditure which consequently is also keeping real estate “depressed.”
Though the U.S. economy grew at an annualized rate of 1.8% in the first three months of 2011, housing sector growth fell for the fourth time in the past six quarters.