U.S. existing home sales tracked estimates
U.S. existing home sales tracked estimates with a 1.9% October bounce to a firm 5.46 M pace, after a small downward revision that exacerbated the September pull-back from a lofty 5.50 M August level. The median price continued to post a seasonal unwind of the all-time high in June, leaving a firm 6.2% y/y climb. Inventories fell for a fourth consecutive month to a 1.77 M level that translated to a 3.9 month supply, though analysts still have a big 15.7% 10-month climb from a particularly weak late-2018 level. The home sales data will likely remain strong through Q4, following the September pull-back for the major sales measures from solid rates in July and August. Today's strength accompanies Tuesday's robust set of October starts and permits figures. More generally, the home sales data have strengthened substantially since the beginning of 2019 with lower mortgage rates, and this recovery should continue as long as Fed policy remains accommodative. Existing home sales are poised for a 7% Q4 pace, after rates of 11.0% (was 11.6%) in Q3, 6.3% in Q2 and 5.0% in Q1. The annual growth rate for 2019 should be nearly flat despite quarterly gains through the year thanks to the weak close for 2018. Analysts still expect a Q3 GDP growth boost to 2.1% (was 1.9%), and 2.0% growth in Q4.