Smile about June sales of new homes, then frown

Sales of newly built, single-family homes rose 11 percent in June to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 384,000 units, according to the U.S. Commerce Department.

Coming on the heels of an upwardly revised number for May, the gain marks a third consecutive month of improved sales activity.  Whether it’s a great leap forward remains to be seen.

In fact, the number of sales on a seasonally adjusted basis–36,000–represented the weakest June sales since 1982.

And there are plenty of factors that suggest the cheery news needs to be taken with at least half a grain of salt.  Continue reading