U.S. home resales dropped in April, following a month where they rose at the fastest pace in nine months, according to the National Association of Realtors.
Resales fell 6.2% last month to an annual rate of 4.88 million at a seasonally adjusted annual rate, NAR said. Last month's level of sales is still higher than in February, and followed a revised 9.2% gain in March to an annual rate of 5.2 million, originally reported as a 1.5% rise to a 4.83 million pace.
March's rate of increase was the fastest since a 10.9 % gain last June and the level of home sales in March was the highest since August's 5.3 million. March resales were on a pace to match the 5.2 million homes sold all last year, a fourth straight annual record for resales.
With nearly all indicators pointing toward continued growth, the Fed raised interest rates by 50 basis points two weeks ago, pushing the federal funds rate - which is the rate charged for bank to bank transactions - to 6.5%. The discount rate jumped to 6%. With no evidence of a slowdown, the Fed indicated that more hikes are likely in order to control the robust economy.
However, it seems as though consumers are confident about incomes and jobs despite the increases in interest rates.
The April report showed sales fell in all regions, with the largest decline in the Northeast. The median price of a home rose 1.5% to $136,700 last month from $134,700 in March.
The supply of homes for sale rose to 3.9 months from 3.1 months in March. That is still lower than the 5-month supply registered in April 1999. In April, 1.57 million houses were for sale, up from 1.34 million a month earlier.
The 30-year mortgage rate rose to 8.64% earlier this month, the highest level in more than five years.