The rate of sales for single-family, detached resale homes plummeted 40.2 percent in California in October compared to the same month last year, while the median price dropped 9.9 percent the California Association of Realtors trade group reported Wednesday. And the California Building Industry Association reported that total housing starts in the state fell 30.9 percent from January through October in California compared to the same period last year. Leslie Appleton-Young, chief economist for the association, said in a statement, "We expect further weakness in sales over the next few months as the liquidity crisis plays out." The group's Unsold Inventory Index was 16.3 months in October, indicating that it would take an estimated 16.3 months to exhaust the supply of for-sale homes at the October sales pace. The index stood at 6.4 months in October 2006. A for-sale inventory of about six months is considered to indicate a market that is roughly in equilibrium, with a supply greater tha...
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