The National Association of Realtors said Tuesday morning that home sales across the country dipped slightly during December, but that sales during 2012 were the strongest in several years. Here's a link to a story in the Star Tribune, and here's a bit more analysis from the economists at Wells Fargo Securities about what led to the decline:
"Despite a bit of payback from the solid boost in November, existing home sales are now up 12.8 percent over the past year. While sales fell on the month, some volatility is expected during the seasonally slow months. The median time on the market for an existing home was 73 days, which is down from 99 days a year ago.
"On a regional basis, sales activity in the Northeast and West rose, but fell in the South and Midwest. Inventories Remain Lean · Distressed transactions which include foreclosures and short sales increased to 24 percent in December. Notwithstanding the bump in distressed sales, median home prices are up 11.5 percent over the past year. Unusually tight inventories continue to be a big driver in the on-going upward momentum in median home prices. Total housing inventory fell to 1.82 million units, which is just a 4.4 month supply – the lowest supply since 2005."