January 23, 2014 10:15 AM, EST
Existing Home Sales Rise in December

Existing home sales increased 1% in December, the first rise in four months, the National Association of Realtors said Jan. 23.

Sales rose to an annual rate of 4.87 million. The December level was lower than economists’ median forecast of 4.93 million, Bloomberg News reported.

“Housing is on the mend,” Anika Khan, a senior economist at Wells Fargo Securities, told Bloomberg. “It’s had a few negative factors to impact it and some slowdown activity, but that’s to be expected, especially this time of year.”

Sales rose in two of the four regions. The West was highest with a 4.8% rise, followed by 3.6% in the South.

For the full year, purchases increased 9.1% to 5.09 million, Bloomberg reported.