Thursday, May 22, 2014

Existing Home Sales in April: 4.65 million SAAR, Inventory up 6.5% Year-over-year

by Bill McBride on 5/22/2014 10:00:00 AM

The NAR reports: April Existing-Home Sales Show Modest Improvement Behind Gaining Inventory

Total existing-home sales, which are completed transactions that include single-family homes, townhomes, condominiums and co-ops, rose 1.3 percent to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 4.65 million in April from 4.59 million in March, but are 6.8 percent below the 4.99 million-unit level in April 2013.

Total housing inventory at the end of April jumped 16.8 percent to 2.29 million existing homes available for sale, which represents a 5.9-month supply at the current sales pace, up from 5.1 months in March. Unsold inventory is 6.5 percent higher than a year ago, when there was a 5.2-month supply.
Existing Home SalesClick on graph for larger image.

This graph shows existing home sales, on a Seasonally Adjusted Annual Rate (SAAR) basis since 1993.

Sales in April (4.65 million SAAR) were higher than last month, but were 6.8% below the April 2013 rate.

The second graph shows nationwide inventory for existing homes.

Existing Home InventoryAccording to the NAR, inventory increased to 2.29 million in April from 1.96 million in March.   Inventory is not seasonally adjusted, and inventory usually increases from the seasonal lows in December and January, and peaks in mid-to-late summer.

The third graph shows the year-over-year (YoY) change in reported existing home inventory and months-of-supply. Since inventory is not seasonally adjusted, it really helps to look at the YoY change. Note: Months-of-supply is based on the seasonally adjusted sales and not seasonally adjusted inventory.

Year-over-year Inventory Inventory increased 6.5% year-over-year in April compared to April 2013.   This year-over-year increase in inventory suggests inventory bottomed early last year.

Months of supply was at 5.9 months in April.

This was slightly below expectations of sales of 4.67 million.  For existing home sales, the key number is inventory - and inventory is still low, but up year-over-year.    I'll have more later ...