WASHINGTON (AP) — Sales of new U.S. homes jumped 6.7 percent in May, with purchases in the South accounting for all of the monthly gains.
The Commerce Department says that new homes sold last month at a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 689,000, up from 646,000 in April. The South reported monthly sales growth of17.9 percent, while sales were flat in the Midwest and fell in the Northeast and West.
For the first five months of this year, new-home sales have risen 8.8 percent as a solid job market and shortage of existing homes on the market have boosted demand.
But May’s median sales price dropped 3.3 percent from a year ago to $313,000. The decline was largely because the sales growth was concentrated in the South, where new homes are generally cheaper.