Sales to Boost Economy
Existing home sales increased more than expected in November, hitting their highest level in nearly 11 years, the latest indication that housing was regaining momentum after almost stalling this year. The report from the National Association of Realtors® also added to data ranging from the labor market to retail sales that have suggested the economy was ending 2017 on a strong note.
“The greater home sales will stoke the fires for stronger economic growth next year as consumers spend more to furnish their new homes with new appliances and furniture and all the decorations and trimmings,” said Chris Rupkey, chief economist MUFG in New York.
Existing home sales surged 5.6 percent to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 5.81 million units last month amid continued recovery in areas in the South ravaged by Hurricanes Harvey and Irma, and solid gains in other parts of the country. That was the highest level since December 2006 and marked the third straight monthly rise. Economists had forecast home sales rising only 0.9 percent to a 5.52 million-unit rate in November.