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28 Jan 2021 | 15:53

Covid-19 takes its toll on US new home sales in December

(Sharecast News) - New home sales in the US rose a bit less quickly than expected at the end of 2020 as the rising number of Covid-19 infections took its toll. According to the Department of Commerce, the annualised pace of new home sales increased by 1.6% month-on-month in December to reach 842,000.

Economists had penciled-in a rise to 858,000.

Nonetheless, in comparison to a year ago, new home sales were ahead by 18.8%.

Furthermore, the median sales price of a new home meanwhile increased from $343,900 to $355,900.

In parallel, the stock of homes available for sale increased from 4.9 months to 5.6.

Commenting on the outlook for housing, Ian Shepherdson at Pantheon Macroeconomics said: "Covid cases and hospitalizations continued to rise until well into this month, so we expect another relatively lackluster month for new home sales in January.

"But February and March should be better, and we then expect a sustained re-acceleration in the spring and summer, as Covid recedes for good."
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