New Home Sales Exceed Expectations

Higher mortgage rates may have held down sales of new homes across the U.S. in May, but not to the extent that economists had anticipated.

Sales of new one-family houses were at a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 1.234 million last month, 4.6% higher than the revised April rate of 1.18 million, the U.S. Commerce Department reported on June 26. May's rate, however, was 5.9% below the May 2005 rate of 1.311 million.

Some 556,000 new homes were for sale at the end of May, a 5.5-month supply.

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