median falls to $211,700
The National Association of Realtors reported Wednesday that sales of existing homes fell 8 percent in September, the largest decline to show up in records dating to 1999. The seasonally adjusted annual sales rate of 5.04 million existing homes was also the slowest pace on record. The weakness in sales translated into further pressure on prices. The median price -- the point at which half the homes sold for more and half for less -- fell to $211,700 in September, down by 4.2 percent from the sales price a year ago. It marked the 13th time out of the past 14 months that the year-over-year sales price has decreased.
This is obviously bad news for my bullish thesis. A month ago I pointed out that the median rose 0.4%. It appears, however, that the expensive segment of the market may still be experiencing some rough patches. A 4.2% drop certainly qualifies as a rough patch. Let us now see if Bernanke's helicopter will have to fly more missions.