Steel Markets

Existing Home Prices Climb in August

Written by Sandy Williams

The S&P/Case-Shiller Index reported existing home prices accelerated in August as indicated by a 12.8 percent year-over-year increase and 1.3 percent monthly increase. Both the 10-city and 20-city composites were at their highest annual increase since February 2006.

“The monthly percentage changes for the 20-City composite show the peak rate of gain in home prices was last April,” said David M. Blitzer, Chairman of the Index Committee at S&P Dow Jones Indices. “Since then home prices continued to rise, but at a slower pace each month. This month 16 cities reported smaller gains in August compared to July. Recent increases in mortgage rates and fewer mortgage applications are two factors in these shifts.”

Fourteen cities showed accelerated year-over-year growth with Las Vegas leading the pack with a 29.2 percent increase.

All the cities in the index had month-over-month growth but showed some signs of slowing.  Las Vegas had the highest growth rate at 2.9 percent and Seattle the lowest at 0.5 percent. San Francisco has been slowing since April when it recorded a 4.9 percent growth rate as compared to 0.9 percent in August.

Average home prices peaked in mid-2006 and are currently at mid-2004 levels.  Prices were at a recent low in March 2012 but have since recovered by 22.1 percent for the 10-city composite and 22.7 percent for the 20-City Composite (see chart below).

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