Scott Marks 4:26 p.m., May 21
May New Home Sales Plunge; West Worst. Wall Street Stunned
Sales of new single-family homes plummeted a record 33% in May, according to Commerce Department figures released this morning (June 23). Sales plunged to a seasonally adjusted rate of 300,000, the lowest since records were first compiled in 1963, according to MarketWatch. Sales were down 50% in the West. Contributing to the plunge was the expiration of a a federal subsidy for home buyers. But economists had expected a 20% drop to a seasonally-adjusted to 405,000. May's median sales price was $200,900, down 9.6% from a year earlier and the lowest since December of 2003.The stock market had been up when the numbers were announced, and quickly turned south.