- - Wednesday, September 26, 2012

Sales of new homes in the United States dipped slightly in August from July, but the median price of homes sold during the month rose by a record amount.

New-home sales edged down to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 373,000 in August, a dip of 0.3 percent from July’s revised rate of 374,000, the Commerce Department said Wednesday. That had been the fastest pace since April 2010, when government tax credits were boosting sales.

Sales in August were up 27.7 percent from the pace a year ago. But even with that gain, new-home sales remain well below the annual pace of 700,000 that economists consider healthy.

The median price of a new home jumped 11.2 percent in August to $256,900, the biggest one-month gain on record.


U.S. Bank, PNC are latest to report website problems

NEW YORK — Two more major banks, U.S. Bank and PNC, have reported problems with their websites after a financial-services security group warned about possible cyberattacks on banks.

A spokesman for U.S. Bank says some customers have experienced delays. He says the bank is working to fix the problem and is working with law enforcement. A spokesman for PNC says the bank is “taking appropriate measures.”

The U.S. Bank spokesman says the issue appears to be related to problems at other banks in the past week. JPMorgan Chase and Bank of America both had system problems last week, and Wells Fargo reported access problems with its site Tuesday.

Last week, the Financial Services Information Sharing and Analysis Center raised its cyberthreat level to “high” from “elevated” because of potential cyberattacks.


Canadian union reaches contract deal with Chrysler

TORONTO — The Canadian Auto Workers union says it has reached a tentative agreement with Chrysler on a labor contract.

CAW President Ken Lewenza confirmed a settlement Wednesday night but did immediately release details. The union wanted Chrysler to match the agreements it reached with Ford and GM this month.

The agreement must still be ratified by the workers. The deals avoided strikes and the possibility the Detroit automakers would move future production into Latin America, where labor is cheaper.

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