Pending home sales declined 1.4% to an index reading of 99.3 in June after a revised 1.2% increase to 100.7 in May, according to a report released Thursday by the National Association of Realtors.

Economists polled by Thomson Reuters predicted that the index would be up 0.2%.

The May number was originally reported as a 5.9% gain to 101.1.

Year-over-year the pending homes sales index is up 9.5% from last June, when the index was 90.7.

Regionally, pending sales mostly declined. The Northeast saw a 7.6% decrease to 76.6, while sales fell 0.4% in the Midwest to 94.4. In the South, sales dropped 2.0% to 106.2, and sales gained 2.6% to 111.5 in the West.

NAR Chief Economist Lawrence Yun said inventory shortages have hurt the market, especially at the low end of the scale, which is "popular with first-time buyers and investors."

Yun also noted delays in closings as record low mortgage rates have led to "a surge of refinancing on top of a higher level of home purchases," he said.

"In addition, there have been some delays with recent foreclosure sales as banks take steps to ensure there are no paperwork problems. This is causing an uneven performance in sales closings, which is likely to continue, but we also see notably higher levels of sales activity compared with a relatively flat performance in the preceding four years," Yun said.

Subscribe Now

Independent and authoritative analysis and perspective for the bond buying industry.

14-Day Free Trial

No credit card required. Complete access to articles, breaking news and industry data.