Wednesday, January 31, 2018

NAR: Pending Home Sales Index Increased 0.5% in December, Up 0.5% Year-over-year

by Bill McBride on 1/31/2018 10:05:00 AM

From the NAR: Pending Home Sales Tick Up 0.5 Percent in December

Pending home sales were up slightly in December for the third consecutive month, according to the National Association of Realtors®. In 2018, existing-home sales and price growth are forecast to moderate, primarily because of the new tax law's expected impact in high-cost housing markets.

The Pending Home Sales Index, a forward-looking indicator based on contract signings, moved higher 0.5 percent to 110.1 in December from an upwardly revised 109.6 in November. With last month's modest increase, the index is now 0.5 percent above a year ago.
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The PHSI in the Northeast dipped 5.1 percent to 93.9 in December, and is now 2.7 percent below a year ago. In the Midwest the index decreased 0.3 percent to 105.0 in December, but is still 0.3 percent higher than December 2016.

Pending home sales in the South grew 2.6 percent to an index of 126.9 in December and are now 4.0 percent higher than last December. The index in the West rose 1.5 percent in December to 101.7, but is still 3.1 percent below a year ago.
emphasis added
This was close to expectations of a 0.4% increase for this index. Note: Contract signings usually lead sales by about 45 to 60 days, so this would usually be for closed sales in January and February.