WASHINGTON -- Americans bought fewer new homes in June after sales jumped to a two-year high in May. The steep decline suggests a weaker job market could make the housing recovery slow and uneven.
The Commerce Department says sales of new homes fell 8.4 percent last month to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 350,000. That's the lowest in five months. Sales in the Northeast plunged 60 percent to the lowest level since November.
Nationwide, sales in May and April were revised much higher. And June's sales pace is still 15.1 percent higher than in June 2011.
The number of unsold new homes is near record lows. There were 144,000 new homes for sale in June, just above May's 143,000 - the lowest on records dating back to 1963.