New Home Sales


PHOTO: Paul J. Richards/AFP/Getty Images)

WASHINGTON—Americans purchased fewer new homes in May, a sign the housing sector remains on uneven footing.

Purchases of newly built single-family homes decreased 7.8% to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 626,000 in May, the Commerce Department said Tuesday. It was the slowest pace of sales since December.

Economists surveyed by The Wall Street Journal had expected a sales pace of 683,000 homes in May.

The number of homes for sale in May would last 6.4 months at the recent pace. That is up from 5.6 months a year earlier. The median sales price of a new home in May was $308,000, down from $316,700 a year earlier. But lower prices and more supply didn’t stoke better demand last month.


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