US new home sales fall in June


The Commerce Department has revealed sales of new homes in the US fell in June, suggesting the housing market remains depressed.

According to the Commerce Department, new single-family home sales fell by 1% in June on a monthly basis to an annual rate of 312,000 units – lower than expectations of 325,000 units.

Meanwhile, the figures come shortly after the National Association of Realtors (NAR) revealed sales of previously owned homes in the US fell 0.8% on a monthly basis to a 7-month low in June.

Demand for housing in the US remains weak, despite mortgage rates hovering at record lows and falling house prices – the latter due to millions of home repossessions.

Further house price falls are likely this year as high unemployment impacts negatively on the housing market.

The closely-watched Case Shiller home price index revealed house prices fell by around 4% year on year.

Meanwhile, in other US news, consumer confidence rose in July.

The reading from the closely-monitored Consumer Confidence Index from the Conference Board rose to 59.5 in July from 57.6 in June.

However, despite the rise, the reading remains far away from the 90 points required to show that the world’s largest economy is on solid footing.

Since the index commenced in 1967, the average reading has been 95.6.

Commenting on the figures, the Conference Board’s Lynn Franco said: “Overall, consumers remain apprehensive about the future, but some of the concern expressed last month has abated.”

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