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In July, Anil Lilly tours his new home, in Washingtonville, N.Y. Photo: John Minchillo/AP

Existing-home sales jumped by 24.7% in July, the National Association of Realtors reported Saturday.

Why it matters: July's surge beats last month's record as the largest recorded monthly increase in previously owned home sales since 1968, when NAR began collecting data.

What they're saying: “The housing market is well past the recovery phase and is now booming with higher home sales compared to the pre-pandemic days,” Lawrence Yun, NAR’s chief economist, said in a press release.

  • “With the sizable shift in remote work, current homeowners are looking for larger homes and this will lead to a secondary level of demand even into 2021.”
  • “The number of new listings is increasing, but they are quickly taken out of the market from heavy buyer competition,” Yun said. “More homes need to be built.”

Details: The national median home price breached $300,000 for the first time in July, NAR said, and total housing inventory has decreased 2.6% since June.

  • Sales jumped in all regions, but saw the most dramatic increase in the Northeast and the West.

What to watch, per the Wall Street Journal: "Buyers are ready to move farther from cities, now that many workers aren’t commuting every day."

Go deeper

Dion Rabouin, author of Markets
Oct 1, 2020 - Economy & Business

Midwest manufacturing survey soars

Data: Investing.com; Chart: Axios Visuals

Unexpectedly strong U.S. data may have helped pull the stock market out of its funk over the past few days.

Driving the news: Following Tuesday’s stronger-than-expected consumer confidence report from the Conference Board, ADP reported the biggest increase in private-sector job growth in three months Wednesday and a measure of business conditions in the Midwest rose to the highest level since the end of 2018.

Updated 5 hours ago - World

U.S. airstrike kills senior al-Qaeda leader in Syria, DOD says

A displacement camp near the village of Qah in Syria's northwestern Idlib province. Photo: Ahmad Al-Atrash/AFP via Getty Images

A U.S. airstrike in northwest Syria on Friday killed senior al-Qaeda leader Abdul Hamid al-Matar, U.S. Central Command said in a statement.

Why it matters: Syria serves as a "safe haven" for the extremist group to plan external operations, according to U.S. Army Maj. John Rigsbee.

Updated 10 hours ago - Politics & Policy

Giuliani associate Lev Parnas convicted of campaign finance crimes

Lev Parnas, a former associate of then-President Donald Trump’s personal lawyer Rudy Giuliani. Photo: Stefani Reynolds/Bloomberg via Getty Images

Florida businessman Lev Parnas was convicted Friday on charges of conspiracy to make foreign contributions to political campaigns, according to multiple outlets.

Why it matters: Prosecutors said Parnas, then an associate of former President Donald Trump's personal lawyer Rudy Giuliani, funneled over $150,000 from a Russian businessman into U.S. campaigns as part of an effort to land licenses in the U.S.'s legal cannabis industry.

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