Tuesday, April 27, 2010

Year over Year Housing Prices Up for the First Time Since 2006, But Momentum Weak

The Washington Post details:

Home prices in February posted their first annual increase in more than three years, though it's too early to say the housing market is recovering.

Despite the 0.6 percent increase on a non-seasonally adjusted basis, 11 of the 20 cities in the Standard & Poor's/Case-Shiller home price index showed declines.

The last time prices rose on a year-over-year basis was December 2006. But economists polled by Thomson Reuters had predicted prices to rise 1.2 percent in February.

Home prices are up more than 3 percent from the bottom in May 2009, but still are 30 percent below the May 2006 peak.

On a month to month basis, the Case-Shiller Home Price Index was relatively unchanged on a seasonally adjusted basis (the Composite 20 dipped slightly, the Composite 10 jumped slightly). Both were below estimates.

What is striking is where the month-to-month increases were concentrated... almost entirely in the west.

And the longer view shows the relative strength (i.e. weakness) of the rebound as compared to the fall.

Source: S&P