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Home sales fall nationally as buyers pay higher prices

July 19, 2012|By Alejandro Lazo
  • A house for sale in San Diego.
A house for sale in San Diego. (AP Photo/Gregory Bull )

Home sales fell nationally last month as buyers paid higher prices.

The National Assn. of Realtors said sales declined 5.4% from May, though they were up 4.5% from June 2011, to hit a seasonally adjusted annualized rate of 4.37 million units. The group blamed a tight supply limiting buyer choices.

Nevertheless the numbers surprised economists who were anticipating a stronger figure.

"This was a weak report, and quite unexpected," wrote Patrick Newport, an economist with IHS Global Insight. "Indeed, if one removes investors from the calculations, the drop in sales was even sharper than the reported ones."

The national median home price for previously owned homes increased 3.7% from May and was up 7.9% from June 2011.

Total housing supply was 2.39 million existing homes available for sale, representing a supply of a little over 6 1/2 months.

ALSO:

June housing starts jump to four-year high

Drop in foreclosure sales is boosting Southland prices

Southern California housing market posts gains in June

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