Keeping you up to date on the latest data releases.
In March, the S&P Case-Shiller 10-city and 20-city composite housing price indexes rose 0.8 percent and 0.9 percent for the month and posted year-over-year increases of 12.6 percent and 12.4 percent, respectively. In the first quarter of 2014, the national index gained 0.2 percent and 10.3 percent over the past four quarters. Nineteen of the 20 cities showed positive returns in March —New York was the only city to decline. Dallas and Denver reached new index peaks. Annual price increases for the two composites have slowed in the past four months and 13 cities saw annual price changes moderate in March. Chicago showed its highest year-over-year return of 11.5 percent since December 1988. Meanwhile, Cleveland showed the slowest growth, improving just 3.9 percent over the past 12 months. Overall, home prices are back to mid-2004 price levels.
The FHFA housing price index rose 0.7 percent in March and 6.5 percent annually. In the first quarter of 2014 the index improved 1.3 percent and 6.6 percent over the past four quarters. Of the nine census divisions, the Pacific division experienced the strongest increase in the first quarter, posting a 2.1 percent increase and a 13.2 percent increase since last year. House prices were weakest in the Middle Atlantic division, where prices increased 0.1 percent from the previous quarter. Modest inventories of homes available for sale likely played a significant role in driving the price increase, which was similar to appreciation in the preceding quarter. Overall, mortgages sold to, or guaranteed by, Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac are back to mid-2005 price levels.