New-Home Sales Fall Nearly 7 Percent in June

(Los Angeles Times/TNS) -

New-home sales unexpectedly declined in June, bucking a trend of recent positive news in the housing sector.

The Commerce Department said Friday that sales of new single-family homes fell 6.8 percent from May to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 482,000. Wall Street had expected sales to rise to a 548,500 annual rate, according to FactSet.

The new-home sales report tends to be volatile because of its small sample size. Other recent data points have shown the housing market is improving.

On Wednesday, the National Association of Realtors said sales of previously owned homes — the largest sector of the market — hit the highest level in more than eight years.

Economists say sustained job growth has given more families the confidence to make significant purchases. And some real-estate agents say people are rushing to close a deal. That’s because the Federal Reserve is expected to raise its benchmark short-term interest rate later this year.