Home Sales Climb, Jobless Claims Steady: U.S. Economic Takeaways

  • Purchases of existing homes climb to more than nine-year high
  • Unemployment-benefit rolls hover near lowest level in decades

What you need to know about Thursday’s U.S. economic data:


  • Contract closings rose to 5.57 million annual rate (forecast was 5.48 million), the most since February 2007
  • First-time buyer share of all transactions rose to 33 percent, the highest since July 2012
  • Inventories dwindled by 5.8 percent from a year earlier to 2.12 million units, the lowest for a June since 2001

The Takeaway: Purchases of previously owned homes surged with help from first-time purchasers who have been slow to return to the market. Burgeoning wage growth and steady job gains, coupled with low mortgage rates, are giving those entering the market a lift just as investors step away. Demand for the most-expensive properties is strengthening on the back of all-time highs in the stock market that have buoyed wealthier Americans. Keeping a ceiling on sales is super-low supply — June marked 13 straight months of year-on-year declines in inventories. The group’s chief economist said June may have represented the high-water mark for 2016…

Home Sales Climb, Jobless Claims Steady: U.S. Economic Takeaways

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