New homes sales rebounded 2.9 percent in May

A view of single family homes for sale in San Marcos California

Activity in America's residential real estate market continued to hum along at a solid pace last month, the latest official revealed, amid sharp price increases. New-home sales declined by 10.8 percent in the Northeast and 25.7 percent in the Midwest over the April level, respectively. "Sales are up more than 12 percent from this time a year ago, and we expect continued gains throughout 2017".

The Commerce Department said on Friday new home sales increased 2.9 percent to a seasonally adjusted rate of 610,000 units last month.

"The name of the housing market game over the past few years has been low supply, not low demand", said Ralph McLaughlin, chief economist at Trulia.

He sees the steep climb in house prices as an impediment to future growth in sales.

"The pressure to close deals quickly, which has afflicted the existing home sales market, is also seeping into the market for new homes", Ms. Gudell said. The unemployment rate fell to a 16-year low of 4.3% in May and mortgage rates are still favorable by historical standards.

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The median house price rose to a record high of $345,800 in May, from $310,200 in the prior month.

The U.S. dollar pared losses against the yen after the data.

The U.S. new home sales recovered in May, coming in stronger than anticipated.

Despite slowing construction in recent months, the report showed homebuilders might be beginning to respond to demand, with the supply of new homes for sale hitting its highest level in almost eight years at 268,000.

At May's sales rate, it would take 5.3 months to clear inventory, unchanged from April. Sales declined by almost 24 percent in the Midwest over the pace a year ago, and were unchanged in the Northeast. For the nine census divisions, the seasonally adjusted monthly price changes from March to April ranged from a 0.1 percent decline in the East South Central division to a 1.6 percent upswing in the West South Central division.

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