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Weekly Housing Indicators Show Price Gains Continuing, Supply Still Contracting

The 30 day moving average of US house sales for the 30 days ended July 26  showed prices continuing to rise while sales volume declined for the first time since March, in data reported by Dataquick. There were 198,090 sales recorded for the period, versus 220,425 for the 30 days ended July 19. This represented a gain of 12.4% from the year ago period. Since June 21 the one year rate of change has ranged from 10.5% to 13.7%. Median sale prices rose from $197,000 last week to $197,900 in the current week, for a gain of 7% versus the year ago period. Over the past 5 weeks the annual rate of change ranged from 5.6% to 7.5%.

Weekly Home Sales Price Trend - Click to enlarge

Weekly Home Sales Price Trend – Click to enlarge

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Source: DQNews. Using the most current 30/31 days for each county. Covers 98 of the Top 100 US MSAs (excludes Louisville and Wichita) – 66.25% of US home sales. These numbers are not modeled. They are real sales counts and medians.

The Dataquick data is from closed sales, representing contracts that were generally signed two months earlier on average. Data from Corelogic based on current contract prices obtained from all US Multiple Listing Services through June suggested that prices gained another 1.4% in June.

For current real time price information we must rely on listings prices. Aggregate listing prices from have proven to be accurate representations of the trend of the market. Subsequently released sales data has shown that sales prices are consistently between 95% and 97% of listing prices. The median real time listing price of 54 large US metropolitan areas fell by 0.3% in the month ended July 23, with a year to year gain of 2.4%. Seasonally, prices normally peak in June and begin a decline in July that lasts until January. The key to the trend is lies in the rate of change relative to the same period last year.  At this point, there’s no sign of a change in the trend.

According to, “The median asking price for homes in the US peaked in June 2006 at $319,459 and is now $83,433 (26.1%) lower. From a low of $211,844 in January 2011, the median asking price in the US has increased by $24,180 (11.4%).”

Listing Prices - Click to enlarge

Listing Prices – Click to enlarge


Listing inventory fell  by 2.7%  in the month ended July 23, and are down 22.8% year to year. Normally inventories peak in the summer between June and August.Contrary to the widespread and irrational fear that “shadow inventory” will depress the market, the trend is going the other way.  The trend of declining inventory is continuing and may even be accelerating. The normal increase in inventory that normally occurs in the first half of the year did not materialize this year. Inventory, especially the inventory of well located, desirable properties in good condition,  may be headed for new lows.  This should contribute to keeping prices in an uptrend.

54 Metros Listing Inventory - Click to enlarge

54 Metros Listing Inventory – Click to enlarge


Wall Street Examiner Home Sales Charts

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Lee Adler

I’ve been publishing The Wall Street Examiner and its predecessor since October 2000. I also publish, and was lead analyst for Sure Money Investor, of blessed memory. I developed David Stockman's Contra Corner for Mr. Stockman. I’ve had a wide variety of finance related jobs since 1972, including a stint on Wall Street in both sales, analytical, and trading capacities. Prior to starting the Wall Street Examiner I was a commercial real estate appraiser in Florida for 15 years. I was considered an expert in the analysis of failed properties that ended up in the hands of bank REO divisions, the FDIC, and the RTC. Remember those guys? I also worked in the residential mortgage and real estate businesses in parts of the 1970s and 80s. I have been charting stocks and markets and doing analytical work since I was a teenager. I'm not some Ivory Tower academic, Wall Street guy. My perspective comes from having my boots on the ground and in the trenches, as a real estate broker, mortgage broker, trader, account rep, and analyst. I've watched most of the games these Wall Street wiseguys play from right up close. I know the drill from my 55 years of paying attention. And I'm happy to share that experience with you, right here.