FXstreet.com (Barcelona) - US home purchases increased by 44% on a year-on-year rate for November, breaking previous records in the process.

US existing home sales continued strong for the second straight month, growing 7.4% in November. Market forecasts had predicted a much more modest gain of 2.5% for November after the huge 10.1% jump in October.

Home sales reached a yearly rate of 6.31 million in November, beating both forecast for 631M and last month's result of 6.10 million.

US Housing Price Index also rose 0.6%, coming in above predictions of 0.2% and the previous month' results of 0.0%.

Contrasting with the good news from the housing sector, the Richmond Fed Manufacturing Index, which gauges the health of US manufacturers, produced a result of -4, inverting the optimistic forecasts of 4.