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IPFS News Link • Housing

Pending home sales drop to a record low, even worse than during the financial crisis

• by Diana Olick

Mortgage rates in October rose sharply, with the average on the 30-year fixed loan briefly soaring over 8%.

Rates have since pulled back but are still above 7%, and supply is still tight.

Pending home sales, a measure of signed contracts on existing homes, dropped 1.5% in October from September.

They hit the lowest level since the National Association of Realtors began tracking this metric in 2001, meaning it's even worse than readings during the financial crisis more than a decade ago. Sales were down 8.5% from October of last year.

Because the index measures signed contracts, it is the most recent indicator of housing demand. It reflects the buyers who were out shopping in October, which was when the popular 30-year fixed mortgage rate briefly shot higher than 8%.