Keeping you up to date on the latest data releases.
The latest S&P/Case-Shiller and FHFA reports agree: Home prices have been declining solidly, both on a monthly and a quarterly basis.
The national S&P/Case-Shiller home price index fell a steep 3.4 percent in the third quarter, wiping out the 2.6 percent gain in the second quarter and marking the largest drop since the first quarter of 2009. The four-quarter growth rate relapsed into negative territory, dropping from 3.8 percent to −1.6 percent. Meanwhile, the monthly data revealed that September witnessed the largest of three consecutive price declines, for both the 20-city and the 10-city composite indexes. The 20-city index retreated 0.8 percent and the 10-city index retreated 0.7 percent over the month, dragging their respective 12-month growth rates down to 0.5 percent and 1.5 percent.
The purchase-only home price index published by the Federal Housing Finance Agency (FHFA) also dipped in the third quarter, by 1.6 percent. This decline follows a short-lived 0.7 percent gain in the second quarter, which had interrupted a string of eleven quarterly declines. The four-quarter growth rate slumped from −1.8 percent to −3.2 percent. The monthly FHFA index exhibited its fourth consecutive decline in September, and the drop was shared by all Census divisions except the East South Central, which encompasses Kentucky, Tennessee, Mississippi, and Alabama. September's 0.7 percent decline in the total index helped lower the 12-month growth rate from −2.8 percent to −3.4 percent, back to its position in July.