New Home Sales Jump, But Beware

Peter Coy

Don't be too impressed by today's Census Bureau report that new home sales in March rose 13.8% from February. First of all, these numbers fluctuate wildly. Sales had fallen 10.9% in February, so this increase just puts us back on trend. Second, if it's price you care about, the market looks considerably weaker. The median price of new homes sold in March, $224,200, was down 2.2% from a year earlier, the worst yearly performance since January 2003.

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