US Housing Market Declines

Posted June 21st, 2011 at 12:30 pm (UTC-5)
Leave a comment

Sales of previously-owned houses declined in May in the United States, hitting their lowest point of the year.

Tuesday's report from a business group says sales were down 3.8 percent from the prior month.

If sales continued at that rate for a full year, just 4.8 million homes would change hands, more than a million sales below the rate seen in a healthy housing market.

Home prices are declining, which usually helps increase sales. But right now, some prospective buyers are worried that home values will keep falling, possibly leaving them with a house that is worth less than the mortgage loan needed to buy it.

High unemployment and tighter lending standards are also hurting sales.

Home sales are one of many economic issues under consideration Tuesday and Wednesday as top officials of the U.S. central bank meet to discuss interest rates, inflation and unemployment.

The Federal Reserve is expected to keep interest rates steady at the same very low level they have been at for some time.