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New home sales remain at record low in August

September 24, 2010 |  7:44 am

The sales pace of newly constructed homes remained unchanged at a record low in August, indicating continued weakness in the market for new homes months after the expiration of a popular tax credit for buyers.

New single-family dwellings sold at a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 288,000 units, according to the Commerce Department. That estimate was flat compared with July’s pace, which remained a record low even after being revised up.

The August pace was a 28.9% decline from the same month a year earlier.

"The fact that U.S. new home sales remained unchanged at a record low ... shows just how little demand for housing there is at this point," said Paul Dales, U.S. economist with Capital Economics.

The seasonally adjusted estimate of new houses for sale at the end of August was 206,000, representing a supply of 8.6 months at the current sales rate.

In other news for builders, Los Angeles-based KB Home said its loss narrowed in the third quarter, totaling $1.4 million, or two cents per share. That compared with a net loss of $66 million, or 87 cents per diluted share, in the year-earlier quarter.

-- Alejandro Lazo