[SYDNEY] Sales of new homes in Australia rose in October to their highest in four months, a sign of resilient demand that should encourage further building, an industry survey showed on Thursday.
The Housing Industry Association (HIA) said its survey of large volume builders showed sales of new homes climbed 3.0 per cent in October, after a flat performance the previous month. "Sales are still off their cyclical peak reached back in April this year, but the overall volume of new home sales is still at an elevated level," said Harley Dale, HIA chief economist. "That augurs well for healthy new home construction activity persisting into 2015." Record-low interest rates have led to a marked pickup in home prices over this year, while approvals to build new homes have been trending strongly higher.