Pending Home Sales Dip in August as Investors Pull Back

(Los Angeles Times/MCT) -

The number of people who signed contracts to buy homes in August dipped slightly, though it remains near its highest level in a year.

The National Association of Realtors reported Monday that its pending home sales index, which counts sales that are in contract but not yet closed, fell 1 percent in August. Analysts had predicted it would stay flat.

Despite the dip, August was the fourth straight month with the index above what the Realtors Association refers to as an “average” level of contract activity.

Lawrence Yun, chief economist at the NAR, attributed the dip to investors pulling back on their purchases amid higher prices and rising interest rates. So-called “regular” and first-time buyers are making up a bigger share of home sales.

Pending sales in the West climbed for the fourth straight month.