And no, that was not a seasonal effect. Existing home sales declined 6.4% MoM in December, the largest decline since November 2015.
And on a YoY basis, existing home sales plunge 10.25%.
US existing homes are very expensive compared to household income and the surge in mortgage rates during 2018 made housing ever less affordable.
The median price for existing home sales shows a seasonal pattern with June typically being the highest for the calendar year and January being the lowest.
- December existing-home sales in the Northeast decreased 6.8 percent to an annual rate of 690,000, 6.8 percent below a year ago. The median price in the Northeast was $283,400, up 8.2 percent from December 2017.
- In the Midwest, existing-home sales fell 11.2 percent from last month to an annual rate of 1.19 million in December, down 10.5 percent overall from a year ago. The median price in the Midwest was $191,300, unchanged from last year.
- Existing-home sales in the South dropped 5.4 percent to an annual rate of 2.09 million in December, down 8.7 percent from last year. The median price in the South was $224,300, up 2.5 percent from a year ago.
- Existing-home sales in the West dipped 1.9 percent to an annual rate of 1.02 million in December, 15 percent below a year ago. The median price in the West was $374,400, up 0.2 percent from December 2017.
The latest results brought the 2018 tally to 5.34 million, the weakest pace since 2015. This is the biggest annual drop in existing home sales in 8 years…