New-home sales surged in August, according to new estimates released by the U.S. Census Bureau and the Department of Housing and Urban Development. Sales increased 18 percent from one month earlier and are now 33 percent above last year’s estimate. The sales spike was the largest one-month improvement since 1992 and brought sales to their highest level since May 2008. Increased demand for new homes would mean a needed pickup in new residential construction – which has been slower than normal ever since the financial crisis and recession – but it would also boost economic growth and lead to further improvement in the job market. Also in the report, the median sales price of new homes sold in August was $275,600; the average price was $347,900. At the end of the month, there were 203,000 new homes available for sale. That represents a 4.8-month supply at the current sales rate. A 6-month supply is considered healthy for the market. More here.