Following strong starts/permits data but weak mortgage apps (biggest drop in 3 mo), existing home sales broke the tie with a yuuge beat, surging 5.6% MoM (against expectations of a 0.9% jump)...
...to the strongest pace of sales since December 2006.
The median existing-home price for all housing types in November was $248,000, up 5.8 percent from November 2016 ($234,400). November’s price increase marks the 69th straight month of year-over-year gains.
There's just one thing about that surging home price...
Inventory of available properties fell 9.7% y/y to 1.67m, the second-lowest in records to 1999, the NAR said.
“Home prices continue to march higher at a very solid pace,” Lawrence Yun, NAR’s chief economist, said at a press briefing accompanying the report.
“Faster economic growth in recent quarters, the booming stock market and continuous job gains are fueling substantial demand for buying a home as 2017 comes to an end,” he said.
“As evidenced by a subdued level of first-time buyers and increased share of cash buyers, move-up buyers with considerable down payments and those with cash made up a bulk of the sales activity last month. The odds of closing on a home are much better at the upper end of the market, where inventory conditions continue to be markedly better.”
The data are “showing exceptionally tight inventory conditions.”
The overall impact from the tax reform plan “could be mildly negative,” however that could be cushioned by good market conditions including strong demand, a solid job market and the short-term fiscal stimulus from the legislation, he said. The net impact could be slower price gains of up to 3 percent in 2018, he said.