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New home sales up, but still depressed

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(Read caption) Some good news for the housing market: new home sales in November climbed 1.6 percent, but from historically depressed levels.

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Today, the U.S. Census Department released its monthly New Residential Home Sales Report for November showing a monthly increase with sales climbing 1.6% since October and 9.8% above the level seen in November of 2010 but remaining at an epically low level of 315K SAAR units.

It's important to recognize that the inventory of new homes has now fallen to a new series low at 158K units, lowest level seen in in at least 47 years while the median number of months for sale going flat at 7.4.

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The monthly supply declined to 6.0 months while the median selling price declined 2.5% and the average selling price declined 13.77% from the year ago level.

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The chart above shows the extent of sales decline to date.