Case-Shiller Home Price Index Dips In August

The much anticipated Case-Shiller Home Price Index was released today and reported that home prices fell slightly (0.2%) in August from July. Declines were seen in 15 of 20 cities surveyed, but prices were still up on a year over year basis. The index is now off 29% from its all time high and should continue to fall in the months to come. It must be kept in mind that this index uses a 3 month weighted average so the months included are June, July, and August. Most of the deterioration in home prices was seen in late July-August period. Personally, I am surprised home prices did not fall much more (I was expecting around 1%). From the press release:
 “A disappointing report. Home prices broadly declined in August. Seventeen of the 20 cities and both Composites saw a weakening in year-over-year figures, as compared to July, indicating that the housing market continues to bounce along the recent lows,” says David M. Blitzer, Chairman of the Index Committee at Standard & Poor’s. “Over the last four months both the 10- and 20-City Composites show slowing growth, after sustaining consistent gains since their April 2009 troughs.

“The month-over-month growth rates tell the same story. Fifteen of the 20 MSAs and the two Composites saw a decline in the month of August as compared to July levels. The 10- and 20-City Composites fell 0.1% and 0.2%, respectively. Indeed, the housing market appears to have stabilized at new lows. At this time, it does not seem that any of the markets are hanging on to the temporary momentum caused by the homebuyers’ tax credits.”

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