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Continuing Gains in Home Price Indices

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Mortgage Daily

                                                 December 27, 2017

Multiple home price indices indicate that monthly values continued to rise in October. The strongest increases are no longer limited to the West. But one estimate has a decline for November.

At 203.84,
the Case-Shiller 20-City Composite Home Price Index for the month of October turned out to be 0.2 percent higher than one month previous.

In addition, the index — a snapshot of U.S. home values that is
based on a value-weighted average in 20 metropolitan areas — has risen 6.4 percent from the same month last year.

Data from S&P Dow Jones Indices and CoreLogic Inc., which provided the latest Case-Shiller numbers Tuesday, indicate that that the 20-city index is just 1.3 percent shy of the July 2006 peak. Since the index fell to its lowest point in March 2012, it is up 52.0 percent.

“Underlying the rising prices for both new and existing homes are low interest rates, low unemployment and continuing economic growth,” David M. Blitzer, managing director and chairman of the index committee at S&P Dow Jones Indices, said in the report. “Some of these favorable factors may shift in 2018. The Fed is widely expected to raise the Fed funds rate three more times to reach 2 percent by the end of the New Year.”

Compared to October 2016, home prices in Seattle have climbed nearly 13 percent — more than any of the cities tracked in the index. Las Vegas prices have climbed 10.2 percent, then 8.1 percent in San Diego, 7.7 percent in San Francisco and 7.2 percent in Denver.

With only a 3.1 percent year-over-year gain, the District of Columbia had the smallest increase.

A more robust month-over-month U.S. gain, 0.5 percent, was recorded for the Federal Housing Finance Agency’s HPI, leaving it at
254.7 as of October 2017. FHFA’s index was up 6.6 percent from the same month last year.

The regulator derives its data from home sales price information on mortgages sold to, or guaranteed by, Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac.

FHFA reported an 8.7 percent increase from a year earlier in the Pacific, the most of any region. The worst change from twelve months earlier was in the West North Central: -0.4 percent.

The Black Knight HPI was reported at $283,000 as of October 2017, inching up 0.3 percent from the prior month and climbing 6.5 percent from a year prior. The index, which stands at a record high, has ascended 41.9 percent from the January 2012 trough.

Home prices in New York rose from September by 1.0 percent — the most of any state — according to Black Knight. Idaho was up 0.9 percent, followed by Utah’s 0.8 percent, Vermont’s more than 0.7 percent and Nevada’s nearly 0.7 percent. Alaska, with an 0.5 percent decline, was the worst performing state.

Earlier this month, CoreLogic reported that home prices in October increased 0.9 percent from a month earlier and 7 percent from a year earlier. In last month’s report, CoreLogic estimated that prices were down 0.1 percent from September.

“This escalation in home prices reflects both the acute lack of supply and the strengthening economy,” CoreLogic Chief Economist Frank Nothaft explained in the report.

The Irvine, California-based data aggregator
estimated that prices fell 0.2 percent, however, between October and November. CoreLogic predicts that home prices will rise just 4.2 percent between October 2017 and October 2018.

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