August Pending Home Sales Rise 4.3% To 82.3 SAAR, From Downward Revised 78.9
Realtor.org has released the August pending home sales, which increased from a SAAR of 78.9 (of course, downwardly revised from the previous reading), to 82.3 in August, a 4.3% rise on expectations of 2.1%, mostly on a jump in South and West transactions, which increased by 6.7% and 6.4% respectively. And add this to the plethora of data series which consistently see prior numbers revised adversely: July data was revised from a 5.2% increase to 4.5%. NAR chief economist, Larry Yun, once again tried to put some lipstick on the bottom-bouncing pig: “Attractive affordability conditions from very low mortgage interest rates appear to be bringing buyers back to the market. However, the pace of a home sales recovery still depends more on job creation and an accompanying rise in consumer confidence.” And yes, throw one more party praying eagerly each night for QE2.
Although Yun expects a continuing steady rise in home sales from
favorable affordability conditions and some job creation, he cautioned
any sudden rise in mortgage rates could slow the recovery. “Current low
consumer price inflation has helped keep mortgage interest rates very
attractive this year. However, recent rising trends in producer prices
at the intermediate and early stages of production, along with very high
commodity prices, are raising concerns about future inflation and
future mortgage interest rates,” he said. “Higher inflation would mean
higher mortgage interest rates. In the meantime, housing affordability
is hovering near record highs.”
A table of pending home sales through 2010:
Full report of this most irrelevant housing metric.