WASHINGTON, Feb. 26 (Xinhua) -- Sales of new single-family homes in the United States surged to the highest level in more than five years in January, easing concerns over the resilience of the housing market, U.S. Commerce Department said on Wednesday.
Home sales in January jumped 9.6 percent from revised December rate to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 468,000 units, marking the fastest pace since July 2008, data showed. It rose 2.2 percent compared with January 2013.
The median sales price of new houses sold in January fell 2.2 percent to 260,100 U.S. dollars, but was up 3.4 percent from the year-ago level, the figure revealed.
The seasonally adjusted estimate of new houses for sale at the end of January was 184,000 units, which represented a supply of 4. 7 months at the current sales rate, a tighter supply compared to the level at the end of December.
New home sales, though accounting for a smaller share than the existing home sales in the housing market, still have an important impact on job creation and household consumption.
Wednesday's figure followed a slew of recent indicators signaling a sputtering housing market in the face of rising home prices and higher mortgage rates, as well as the unusually cold weather across much of the country.