February new homes sales rise 4.7 percent on bargain hunting


Make it two-for-two in the U.S. housing sector. New home sales unexpectedly rose 4.7 percent in February to a 337,000 seasonally-adjusted, annual pace, the U.S. Commerce Department announced Wednesday, as buyers took advantage of a double-digit yearly decline in prices (pdf). It was the strongest new home sales pace in 10 months.

This is another mild, positive data point for the U.S. economy. It's the second consecutive positive items for the housing sector -- a rarity, recently – and one of at least four positive data points for the U.S. economy this week, something that hasn't occurred in months. Although investors should keep in mind that the new home sales statistic is subject to large revisions, it appears at least a segment of the potential home buyer market is beginning to search for bargains.