By Ed Frankl


Sales of new single-family houses in the U.S. increased in February for the third time in as many months, adding to hopes that the current housing market downturn could be abating. Here are the main takeaways from the Commerce Department's report published Thursday:

--New home sales rose 1.1% in February on month to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 640,000, the highest level since August.

--Economists polled by The Wall Street Journal expected home sales to decrease 3.0% to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 650,000.

--Sales were 19.0% below compared with the same month a year ago, when they stood at an adjusted annual rate of 790,000.

--January new home sales were downwardly revised to 633,000 from an initial estimate of 670,000.

--Monthly new home sales data are volatile and often revised. Data for February came with a margin of error of 15.3 percentage points.

--The median price of a new home rose to $438,200 in February from $426,500 a month earlier.

--The seasonally adjusted estimate of new houses for sale at the end of February was 436,000, representing a supply of 8.2 months at the current sales rate.


Write to Ed Frankl at


(END) Dow Jones Newswires

March 23, 2023 10:27 ET (14:27 GMT)

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