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Sales of new U.S. homes rise 1.3% in October

Sales of new U.S. homes at 307,000 rate in October (by Jeffry Bartash)

WASHINGTON (MarketWatch) - Sales of new single-family U.S. homes rose 1.3% in October to an annual rate of 307,000, the government reported Monday. Sales in September were revised down to 303,000 from an original reading of 313,000, according to data from the Census Bureau and Housing Department. Economists surveyed by MarketWatch had expected new home sales to climb to an annual rate of 320,000 on a seasonally adjusted basis. The median sales price fell $1,000 to $212,300. The supply of new homes on the market dropped slightly to 6.3 months. Sales of new homes are 8.9% higher compared to one year ago, but the housing market remains mired in its worst slump in modern times.