Americans looked past soaring interest rates to buy new homes at a stunning pace in September.
The Commerce Department said new home sales rose 12.3 percent from the prior month to an annual rate of 759,000 in September, far more than the 685,000 expected.
Compared with a year ago, sales are up 33.9 percent.
The figure measures sales of new single family homes. It is seasonally adjusted and reported an an annual rate, meaning it shows how many homes would be sold if buyers purchased at the same rate for 12 months.
September was the fastest pace of new home sales since February 2022, before the Federal Reserve began raising interest rates.
The strength of the market for new homes is all the more surprising because interest rates have climbed very quickly in recent months. In September, the 30-year fixed rate averaged 7.20 percent, the highest in 23 years. A year ago, the 30-year average rate was 6.1 percent.