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New-home sales slipped 1.5% nationwide in April, plunging nearly 8% in the West

New-home sales slipped 1.5% nationwide in April, plunging nearly 8% in the West
A house is under construction in Roseville, Calif. (Rich Pedroncelli / Associated Press)

Sales of new U.S. homes fell 1.5% in April as buying plunged in the West.

The Commerce Department said Wednesday that new homes sold last month at a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 662,000. New-home sales are 8.4% higher than in 2017. A solid job market and a shortage of existing homes for sale have led more people to seek newly constructed properties.

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Sales tumbled 7.9% last month in the West and were essentially unchanged in the Midwest and South. But sales jumped 11.1% in the Northeast.

The median sales price of a new home rose 0.4% from a year earlier to $312,400. But the average price shot up 11.3% because more people bought new homes worth more than $750,000.

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