WASHINGTON -- More Americans signed contracts to purchase homes in May compared with the prior month, a sign buyers may be ready take advantage of low interest rates and stabilizing home prices.
The National Association of Realtors says that its pending home sales index rose 1.1% to a reading of 105.4.
Home sales have been slowing even with average 30-year mortgage rates slipping below 4% last month. During the first five months of the year, purchases of new homes fell 3.7% compared to the same period in 2018, although existing home sales — the bulk of the market — rebounded in May.
U.S. home price gains slowed for the 13th straight month in April.
Pending sales is a measure of home purchases that are usually completed a month or two later.