(AP Photo/Marianne Armshaw)
WASHINGTON (AP) - The government says new U.S. home sales rose by the largest amount in nearly nine years last month. It is a fresh sign that the housing market is emerging from the worst downturn in decades.
The Commerce Department says sales rose 11 percent in June. Sales were running at a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 384,000.
It was the strongest sales pace since November 2008, and better than expected. The last time sales rose so dramatically was in December 2000.
Sales have risen for three straight months. The median sales price of $206,000 was down 12 percent from a year earlier.