Blizzards, unemployment and foreclosures blamed for lowest new home sales on record…

Sales of new homes in the U.S. unexpectedly fell in February to a record low as blizzards, unemployment and foreclosures depressed the market.

Purchases decreased 2.2 percent to an annual pace of 308,000, figures from the Commerce Department showed today in Washington. The median sales price climbed by the most in more than two years.

New-home sales are vying with foreclosure-induced declines in prices for existing homes in an economy where unemployment is forecast to average 9.6 percent this year, close to a 26-year high. Treasury Secretary Timothy F. Geithner yesterday said it would take a “long time” to repair the market as the administration takes steps to overhaul real-estate financing and regulation.

Read the full article, “Sales of New U.S. Homes Dropped to Lowest on Record” at Business Week (March 24, 2010).

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