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New-homes sales drop 11.5% in U.S

Consumers reacting to soft job numbers, builders say

Sales of newly built, single-family homes fell 11.5% to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 468,000 units in September, a new report finds.

According to newly released data from the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development and the U.S. Census Bureau, new-home sales were down across the board. Sales fell 61.8% in the Northeast, 8.3% in the Midwest, 8.7% in the South and 6.7% in the West.

"Despite this monthly drop, our members continue to tell us that housing is moving in the right direction," said Tom Woods, chairman of the National Association of Home Builders (NAHB) and a home builder from Blue Springs, Mo. "Consumers may have simply been reacting to soft job numbers."

Said NAHB Chief Economist David Crowe: "It is not surprising to see sales pull back in September following a strong August reading, especially after a few months of weak job creation. However, new-home sales year-to-date are up 17.6% compared to the same period of 2014, and we expect the market to continue improving at a gradual but steady pace for the rest of year."

The inventory of new homes for sale was 225,000 units in September. This is a 5.8-month supply at the current sales pace.

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