Single-Family Home Sales plunged by 14.5

Apr 23, 2014

The Commerce Department reported today that March New Single-Family Home Sales plunged by 14.5% from February to an annual rate of 384,000 units. The 384,000 was far below the 455,000 that was expected with declines in three of the four U.S. regions. Sales have been stung by rising mortgage rates and home prices, as well as low inventories. The median sales price hit $229,000 in March, up nearly 13% from the year-ago period.

Despite some of the lowest home loan rates this year, mortgage applications continue to decline. The Mortgage Bankers Association reported today that its Market Composite Index, a measure of total loan application volume, fell by 3.3% in the latest week. Within the report it revealed that the refinance index fell by 4%, while the purchase index dropped 3%.

The heart of corporate earnings season is this week with some big names reporting today, such as Proctor & Gamble, Boeing, AT&T, Facebook and Apple. Of the 85 companies that have reported quarterly earnings in the S&P 500 through Monday morning, 67% have beaten estimates. However, companies had lowered their earnings guidance before the season began and there have been no overwhelming positive surprises.

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