In the face of dismal August numbers, sales of new homes in September increased 4.8%, driven by demand in the western US, the Wall Street Journal reports. Despite the unexpected bump, the updated August figures, which reflect an 11-year low, are fueling worries the economy will remain pinned under the weight of the sagging housing market.
Related industries are suffering as buyers cut back on purchases of furniture and appliances. Experts say there’s more to come. “Sales have further to fall,” predicts one economist. There were 523,000 homes for sale last month, down 1.5%, and the lowest number since January 2006. Still, the median price was $238,000, a 5% increase from a year ago.