Wednesday, September 27, 2017

NAR: Pending Home Sales Index decreased 2.6% in August, down 2.6% year-over-year

by Bill McBride on 9/27/2017 10:05:00 AM

From the NAR: Pending Home Sales Fall 2.6 Percent in August; 2017 Forecast Downgraded

Pending home sales sank in August for the fifth time in six months, and slower activity in the areas hit hard by Hurricanes Harvey and Irma will likely pull existing sales for the year below the pace set in 2016, according to the National Association of Realtors®.

The Pending Home Sales Index, a forward-looking indicator based on contract signings, retreated 2.6 percent to 106.3 in August from 109.1 in July. The index is now at its lowest reading since January 2016 (106.1), is 2.6 percent below a year ago, and has fallen on an annual basis in four of the past five months.
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The PHSI in the Northeast fell 4.4 percent to 93.4 in August, and is now 4.1 percent below a year ago. In the Midwest the index decreased 1.5 percent to 101.8 in August, and is now 3.2 percent lower than August 2016.

Pending home sales in the South retreated 3.5 percent to an index of 118.8 in August and are now 1.7 percent below last August. The index in the West declined 1.0 percent in August to 101.3, and is 2.4 percent below a year ago.
emphasis added
This was below expectations of a 0.1% decrease for this index. Note: Contract signings usually lead sales by about 45 to 60 days, so this would usually be for closed sales in September and October.