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Wednesday, May 24, 2017

THE MAY 2017 EXISTING HOUSE SALES REPORT LOOKS GOOD. THE PERPETUAL PESSIMISTS HAVE IT OH SO WRONG.

A well-known financial blogger, at least he once was well-known during the early stages of the 2008 crisis and before he moved his blog to another platform under a vanity domain name, tried to make hay out of the recently released Existing House Sales report from the National Association of Realtors.

First, the data set is sparse. As it is, Americans are only now coming out of the Greenspan-Bernanke Greatest Depression. So those figures only reveal action at a bottom.

According to the Existing Home Sales NAR release of May 24, 2017:


Total existing-home sales ... dipped 2.3 percent to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 5.57 million in April from a downwardly revised 5.70 million in March. 

The NAR staff blamed a lack of supply:

Stubbornly low supply levels held down existing-home sales in April and also pushed the median number of days a home was on the market to a new low of 29 days, according to the National Association of Realtors®.

That once well-known blogger took up the silly idea of a lack of supply and goes one further with a lack of affordable supply:

There is not a supply shortage. Rather, there is a supply shortage of homes people can afford at which buyers are willing to sell. If homes were priced to sell, more homes would sell.
It is folly for anyone to draw conclusions from it without having the keen insight into context. As I have written many times on the True Dollar Journal, without context, all claims about reality using data are misleading.

So here is context so that you can understand what has happened with existing sales.




As you can see in the chart above, from July 2016 to January 2017, the ratio of working age to existing house sales rose. Likely, uncertainty over the presidential election had much to do with it.

As you can see, from the election to December, the ratio fell -4.4% before sharply swinging up during the Holiday season of December and January.




From February 2017 through March 2017, the ratio fell. A falling ratio is good as it shows there are far fewer prime working Americans in need of buying an existing house for sale.

The current uptick in April is a scant 1.3% relative to the large falls of the past two months (-29.9%) and three months (29%).







In True Dollars™, both the median price and the average price had fallen from July 2016 until January 2016. Again, likely that happened owing to heightened uncertainty over the presidential election outcome.

Since January prices have been on the rise in True Dollars™. The median price has risen a bit more than 5% over the last three months. The average prices has risen a bit more than 4% over the last three months.

So what could be driving rise in median and average prices? Well, as most house sales are paid by mortgage borrowings, it can mean only that existing house buying Americans have gained buying power through increased credit being offered to them.

This data set needs to become much larger with data points taken through the upcoming true expansion of the economy and the next contraction that will follow it.



The New House Sales is a much larger data set. As you can see, the picture has become so much better than the 2008 crash and the Greenspan-Bernanke Greatest Depression that happened between 2008 and 2016.


For the report, the NAR defines existing-home sales as closing transactions of single-family, townhomes, condominiums and cooperative homes.

Also, you can always find these charts up in the menus above. You should look up in the menus for many fantastic charts that reveal the clearest picture of the U.S. economy as well as foreign economies. The True Dollars Analysis System™ can be found only on your True Dollar Journal.