US .. home sales fell in January to their lowest level for more than three years, and house prices rose only modestly, suggesting a further loss in the housing market.
The National Association of Realtors said on Thursday that existing home sales fell 1.2 percent to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 4.94 million units last year.
It was the lowest level since November 2015 and well below analysts' expectations of a 5.0 million unit rate. December's sales volume was revised slightly higher.
The decline in January came after months of weakness in the US housing market. Existing housing sales decreased by 8.5 per cent from the previous year.
The US housing market has been stymied by a sharp increase in mortgage rates since 201
At the same time, the 30-year fixed mortgage rate has been deep in recent months, and house price inflation is falling.
The median existing house price rose 2.8 percent from a year ago to $ 247,500 in January. It was the smallest increase since February 2012.
Last year, existing housing sales fell in three of the country's four major regions, which only increased in the Northeast.
There were 1.59 million previously owned homes on the market in January, up from 1.53 million in December.
At the January sales rate, it would take 3.9 months to outgrow the current stock, up from 3.7 months in December. A supply of six to seven months is considered a healthy balance between supply and demand.