UK retail sales grow for fourth consecutive month

UK retail sales reached pre-pandemic levels last month, driven by supermarket and home improvement purchases. 

Retail sales were up 0.8 per cent in August compared to the previous month, which was the fourth consecutive month of growth. 

Read more: A New Look for high street retail? Here’s what matters in the Covid-19 world

UK retail sales were up four per cent compared to February, before the coronavirus pandemic hit the country. 

Non-store retailing volumes were 38.9 per cent above February and household goods stores saw sales rise 9.9 per cent.

However clothing stores remained 15.9 per cent lower than February’s levels due to subdued footfall in city centres following months of lockdown.

Online UK retail sales, which have boomed during the pandemic, dipped 2.5 per cent compared to July. 

But the strong growth during the coronavirus lockdown meant sales were still up 46.8 per cent compared to February, according to

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New home sales surge to highest level since before the Great Recession

The numbers: Sales of new single-family homes in August exceeded an annual rate of 1 million for the first time since 2006, as buyers were forced into the market for newly-constructed properties thanks to the dearth of home listings.

New home sales occurred at a seasonally-adjusted, annual rate of 1.011 million, the Census Bureau reported Thursday. That represents a 4.8% increase from an upwardly-revised pace of 965,000 homes in July. Compared with last year, new home sales are up 43%.

Economists polled by MarketWatch had expected home sales to drop to median pace of 900,000.

What happened: Not all parts of the country saw an uptick in sales despite the historically high rate nationally. New home sales fell 21.4% in the Midwest and 1.7% in the West. Comparatively, the South saw the biggest increase in sales with a 13.4% jump, while sales volumes rose by 5% in the Northeast.


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New Home Sales Strongest Since 2006: Top 7 Housing Stocks

Sales of new single-family homes exceeded 1 million in August 2020, marking the highest level since September 2006. The metric, which has been rising for four consecutive months, exceeded analysts’ expectation by 13.6%.

The U.S. housing market has shown a resilient performance over the past few months despite ambivalent market predictions and fears of a second wave of the virus. Not only did the industry offset these COVID-19-related headwinds but also tackled lumber price swings, mortgage delinquencies, U.S.-China trade spat, labor shortage and inflating land prices.

This industry has experienced a strong V-shaped recovery since May and its growth is now exceeding pre-pandemic levels fueled by the work-from-home initiative and record low mortgage rates.

Since May, the Zacks Building Products – Home Builders industry has improved 57.1% compared with the Zacks Construction sector and S&P 500 composite’s 35% and 14.6% rally, respectively.

Inside the Numbers

August new home sales increased

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Orleans Parish property transfers, Aug. 24-29, 2020: See a list of home and other sales | Real Estate News

Below is a compilation of properties sold in Orleans Parish from Aug. 24-29. Data is compiled from public records.

New Orleans

District 1

Canal St. 3004: $950,000, 3004 Canal LLC to Innovative Historic Restoration LLC.

Erato St. 4129: $258,000, Alexandra S. Mathis Wiggins and Robert L. Wiggins III to Jared Matthews.

Euterpe St. 1016: $264,000, Kristen Faye Westfall Minch and Spencer Barrett Minch to Robert Granville Semmes.

Gravier St. 2523: no value stated, 20176bt 128 LLC to Luis Colindres and Nury Yadira Funez Colindres.

Julia St. 1001: $999,000, David P. Vicknair to Leah Broussard Cowan and Robert Tyra Cowan.

S. Alexander St. 500-02: $45,000, New Orleans Land Holdings LLC to Philip Krause Schmidt and Randall Krause Schmidt.

S. Galvez St. 528: $225,000, Joseph Charles Ciolino to Advanta Ira Services LLC Fbo Carl Fanaro Roth Ira 8003447 and Advanta Ira Services LLC Fbo Lynn Fanaro Roth Ira 8004530.

S. Rampart St.

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As Home Sales Reach Highest Level Since 2006, Luxury Sales Boom

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Joe Raedle/Getty Images

The housing market continued to boom in August as existing home sales reached a pace not seen in more than a decade, fueled in part by demand from high-end buyers.

The seasonally adjusted annual rate of existing home sales reached 6 million for the first time since December 2006, the National Association of Realtors, or NAR, said Tuesday morning.

The housing market is demonstrating a “super V-shaped” recovery as home sale activity outperforms pre-pandemic levels, NAR chief economist
Lawrence Yun
said on a Tuesday call with reporters. Existing home sales rose 2.4% from July and 10.5% year-over-year, the trade group reported. Among single-family homes, those that sold for $1 million or more rose 44% compared with last year, more than any other price point.

“Right now, it is a booming market on the upper-end,” Yun said, citing a trend toward homes with more room that

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August New Home Sales Confirm That The Long Leading Housing Sector Has Been Surging


Housing is a long leading indicator for the economy overall; i.e., it typically peaks over a year before the economy does as a whole, and is also usually one of the first sectors to rebound during a recession.

Thursday morning’s report on August new home sales certainly fit that mold.

Near-15-year high in new home sales is strong confirmation that the long leading housing sector has been surging

As I wrote last week, when housing starts and permits were reported, historically, interest rates have led housing sales and starts, which in turn lead prices, which in turn lead inventory.

Here’s the updated look at mortgage interest rates since the beginning of 2011, measured YoY, vs. single-family housing permits (the least volatile metric), also measured YoY:

Thursday morning the Census Bureau reported new home sales for August. There are two important facts about new home sales:

1. They are the

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Million-Pound Home Sales Soar in U.K. as Rich Change Lifestyle

(Bloomberg) — Sales of U.K. homes costing over 1 million pounds ($1.3 million) doubled last month, outperforming the rest of the market as wealthier buyers sought more space following the Covid-19 lockdown.

Agreed sales were 105% higher than a year earlier in August, compared to a 61% increase in sales of less expensive properties, according to property website Rightmove. Million-pound homes are also finding buyers 18 days faster than in 2019.

a screenshot of a cell phone: Hey Big Spender

© Bloomberg
Hey Big Spender

U.K. real estate is booming after the lockdown held back months of transactions. Demand is being further fueled by a temporary tax reduction and the pursuit of lifestyle changes after the pandemic.

Pricey properties outside of London are benefiting most. Expensive homes jumped 244% in the largely rural county of Norfolk, 174% in Wiltshire and 165% in coastal Cornwall.

“Demand in higher price brackets is more responsive to external events,” said Tom Bill, head

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U.S. new home sales vault to near 14-year high in August

FILE PHOTO: A new home is seen under construction in Los Angeles, California, U.S. July 30, 2018. REUTERS/Lucy Nicholson/File Photo

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – Sales of new U.S. single-family homes increased to their highest level in nearly 14 years in August, suggesting the housing market continued to gain momentum even as the economy’s recovery from the COVID-19 recession appears to be slowing.

The Commerce Department said on Thursday new home sales rose 4.8% to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 1.011 million units last month, the highest level since September 2006. New home sales are counted at the signing of a contract, making them a leading housing market indicator.

July’s sales pace was revised upward to 965,000 units from the previously reported 901,000 units. Economists polled by Reuters had forecast new home sales, which account for about 14% of housing market sales, slipping 1% to a rate of 895,000-units.

The report

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New home sales crush projections, but supply is dwindling

People wait to visit a house for sale in Floral Park, Nassau County, New York, the United States, on Sept. 6, 2020.

Wany Ying | Xinhua News Agency | Getty Images

Exceptional demand for new and existing homes, brought on by the stay-at-home culture of the coronavirus pandemic, has the housing market severely depleted.

Sales of newly built homes jumped to the highest level in 14 years in August, but builders’ supply dropped to just 3.3 months’ worth at the current sales pace. A six-month supply is considered a balanced market. Supply was at 5.5 months in August 2019, according to the U.S. Census.

The situation is even worse in the market for existing homes. It’s down nearly 19% annually to a three-month supply, according to the National Association of Realtors.

“Housing demand is robust but supply is not, and this imbalance will inevitably harm affordability and hinder ownership opportunities,”

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US new home sales surge to fastest pace since 2006 as housing market shines through pandemic

Model homes and for sale signs line the streets as construction continues at a housing plan in Zelienople, Pa., Wednesday, March 18, 2020. U.S. new home sales fell 4.4% in February with bigger declines expected in coming months as the coronavirus puts a major crimp on home sales. (AP Photo/Keith Srakocic)

  • Sales of new US homes accelerated by 4.8% to an annual rate of 1 million units in August, the Census Bureau reported Thursday.
  • That pace is the highest since 2006 and marks four consecutive months of increasing sales.
  • The agency’s estimate of new homes for sale fell to 282,000, reflecting 3.3 months of supply at the current pace of sales. That’s the shortest period in data going back to 1963.
  • Though the housing market has been one of the few bright spots in the virus-rattled economy, some fear dwindling supply will soon halt the sector’s rally.
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