Reports the Washington Post:
Sales of newly built U.S. single-family homes fell unexpectedly in December, data showed on Wednesday, the latest indication that the government-led housing recovery might be losing some steam.
The Commerce Department said sales fell 7.6 percent to a 342,000 unit annual rate from an upwardly revised 370,000 units in November. It was the second straight month that new home sales declined.
If I may be so bold, the $8,000 first-time-buyers tax credit was originally scheduled to end in November, right? So it doesn’t seem like a big leap to assume that buyers may not have scheduled closings for December if they could get it done sooner. Ergo, a slump in sales after November.
Still, according to the Post, "Analysts polled by Reuters had expected new home sales to increase to a 370,000 unit annual pace from November’s previously reported 355,000 units."
Perhaps Reuters should consider asking some different analysts.
By the way, I hereby predict a slump in May home sales.