New home sales slid in March

April 24, 2012 at 11:59 AM

WASHINGTON, April 24 (UPI) -- Sales of new single-family homes declined 7.1 percent from February to March, the U.S. Commerce Department said Tuesday.

Home sales in March came in at a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 328,000. In February, the rate stood at 353,000 new homes sold, the department said, releasing a revised figure.

The rate of home sales in February was 7.5 percent above the 305,000 new single-family homes sold in the same month of 2011.

The Commerce Department said the average sale price for a new home sold in February was $291,200.

Going into April, there were 144,000 new homes on the market, enough to last 5.3-months at the current rate of sales, the Commerce Department said.

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