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Pending Home Sales Skid 4.9% in December

Posted by   /  January 29, 2020  /  No Comments

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(Editor’s note: News releases are published as submitted unless there are errors of fact.) 

All regional indices were down in December. The Northeast PHSI slipped 4.0% to 92.4 in December, 0.1% lower than a year ago. In the Midwest, the index dropped 3.6% to 98.8 last month, 1.3% higher than in December 2018.

Pending home sales in the South decreased 5.5% to an index of 118.1 in December, a 7.4% increase from December 2018. The index in the West fell 5.4% in December 2019 to 93.1, an increase of 7.0% from a year ago.

The National Association of Realtors® is America’s largest trade association, representing more than 1.4 million members involved in all aspects of the residential and commercial real estate industries.

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The Pending Home Sales Index is a leading indicator for the housing sector, based on pending sales of existing homes. A sale is listed as pending when the contract has been signed but the transaction has not closed, though the sale usually is finalized within one or two months of signing.

The index is based on a large national sample, typically representing about 20% of transactions for existing-home sales. In developing the model for the index, it was demonstrated that the level of monthly sales-contract activity parallels the level of closed existing-home sales in the following two months.

An index of 100 is equal to the average level of contract activity during 2001, which was the first year to be examined. By coincidence, the volume of existing-home sales in 2001 fell within the range of 5.0 to 5.5 million, which is considered normal for the current U.S. population.

NOTE: Existing-Home Sales for January will be reported February 21. The next Pending Home Sales Index will be February 27; all release times are 10:00 a.m. ET.

Information about NAR is available at www.nar.realtor. This and other news releases are posted on the NAR Newsroom at www.nar.realtor/newsroom. Statistical data in this release, as well as other tables and surveys, are posted in the “Research and Statistics” tab.

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