Ebbing US home sales hint prices may fall again-S&P

NEW YORK, Jan 29 (BestGrowthStock) – A recent decline of U.S. home
sales is swelling the supply of houses and may push prices
down, adding to losses from an earlier three-year slide, said
rating agency Standard & Poor’s in a statement on Friday.

“While home prices have been trending up since spring 2009,
existing, new and pending home sales are waning, which suggests
that lower prices are on the horizon,” said the statement.

Market analysts and policymakers at the Federal Reserve are
closely watching the battered housing sector and the weak jobs
market to gauge whether the U.S. economy can go on growing and
to determine when the central bank may start raising interest
rates.

Recent data showed U.S. existing home sales dropped by a
monthly record of 16.7 percent in December, while new home
sales fell by 7.6 percent, S&P noted.

U.S. home prices increased in June 2009 in seasonally
adjusted terms for the first time in nearly three years and
prices continued rising through November, S&P said.

But in nonseasonally adjusted terms, the S&P composite
index of home prices in 20 metropolitan areas slipped 0.2
percent in November.

The recent fall in home sales is boosting the number of
existing homes on the market, which grew to a 7.2 months supply
in December from 6.5 months in November, S&P said.

In coming months, “an expanding default and foreclosure
pipeline of 2005-2007 vintage mortgage loans may push the
‘shadow’ inventory of distressed U.S. housing even higher,”
which could impede the market’s stability, S&P added.

Penny Stocks

(Additional reporting by Lynn Adler; Editing by Kenneth
Barry)

Ebbing US home sales hint prices may fall again-S&P