Absorption defined for the purposes of this chart is: Number of months to sell all listing inventory at the annual pace of sales activity. (The definition of absorption in my market report series  reflects the quarterly pace – nearly the same)
I started this analysis in August 2009 so I am able to show side-by side year-over-year comparisons. The blue line showing the 10-year quarterly average travels up and down because of the change in scale caused by some of the significant volatility seen at the upper end of the market. The pink line represents the overall average rate of the most recently completed quarter.
Side by side Manhattan regional comparison:
[click images to expand]
The overall market and each region continue to reflect a fast pace as the absorption rate levels are roughly half as long as seen during the same period in 2011. Some of the greatest gains were seen in the $3M to $10M market. The top 1% or $10M+ market continues to see the slowest absorption rate however those listings generally see the biggest disconnect with market levels as sellers continue to “copycat” the success of a handful of trophy property sales in 2012.