Existing-home sales slump 4.1% in November
Sales of previously owned homes in the US dropped more than expected in October, according to data out Tuesday from the National Association of Realtors (NAR).
Existing-home sales dropped by 4.1% last month to 3.79m, from 3.96m in September. Analysts were expecting a smaller fall to 3.90m.
Compared with October 2022, sales were down 14.6% from 4.44m.
"Prospective home buyers experienced another difficult month due to the persistent lack of housing inventory and the highest mortgage rates in a generation," said NAR chief economist Lawrence Yun.
"Multiple offers, however, are still occurring, especially on starter and mid-priced homes, even as price concessions are happening in the upper end of the market."
Total housing inventory was up 1.8% on the month at 1.15m unites but down 5.7% from a year ago, while unsold inventory at the current sales pace stands at 3.6 months, down from 3.4 months in September.
According to mortgage provider Freddie Mac, the 30-year fixed-rate mortgage averaged 7.44% as of 16 November, down from 7.5% the previous week but up from 6.61% a year earlier.
"Fortunately, mortgage rates have fallen for the third straight week, stirring up buying interest," Yun said. "Though limited now, expect housing inventory to improve after this winter and heading into the spring. More inventory will result in more home sales."