OCTOBER 25, 2008
Home Resales Increase 1.4%, Buoyed by Bargain Hunters
Sales of previously occupied homes rose 1.4% from a year earlier in September as banks slashed prices on foreclosed properties.
The increase, marking the first time since November 2005 that sales topped year-earlier levels, shows that bargain hunters are nibbling at a glut of homes. But that glut remains huge, and credit is still tight. New data from government-backed mortgage investor showed that rising borrowing costs have constrained its ability to push down interest rates by channeling more money into the mortgage market.
Meanwhile, growing job losses are likely to lead to more foreclosures and lower housing demand. As a result, many housing analysts say they don't expect home prices to bottom out for at least another year. "There's really no sign of a housing recovery," said Kenneth Rosen, chairman of the Fisher Center for Real Estate and Urban Economics at the University of California, Berkeley....