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August 28th, 2008 1:08 PM

Trend of Home Price Declines Continued Through the First Half of 2008

Posted By Paige On August 27, 2008 @ 3:39 pm In Real Estate | Comments Disabled

RISMEDIA, August 28, 2008-Data through June 2008, released this week by Standard & Poor’s for its S&P/Case-Shiller Home Price Indices, a measure of U.S. home prices, shows continued broad based declines in the prices of existing single family homes across the United States, a trend that prevailed throughout 2007 and has continued through the first half of 2008.

The decline in the S&P/Case-Shiller U.S. National Home Price Index-which covers all nine U.S. census divisions-remained in double digits, recording a record 15.4% decline in the second quarter of 2008 versus the second quarter of 2007. This is larger than the decline of 14.2% reported in the first quarter of the year. The 10-City and 20-City Composites also set new records, with annual declines of 17.0% and 15.9%, respectively. However, it should be noted that the acceleration in decline was only moderate in June. The May numbers reported annual declines of 16.9% and 15.8%, respectively.

“While there is no national turnaround in residential real estate prices, it is possible that we are seeing some regions struggling to come back, which has resulted in some moderation in price declines at the national level,” says David M. Blitzer, chairman of the Index Committee at Standard & Poor’s. “Depending on where you focus on the details of the report, you can see some different stories on where home prices are headed.

Record year-over-year declines were reported in both the 10-City and 20-City Composites in June; however, they are very close to the values reported for May. The rate of home price decline may be slowing. For the month, the 10-City Composite was down 0.6% and the 20-City Composite was down 0.5%. While still falling, these are far less than the 2-2.5% monthly drops seen earlier in 2008. In June, nine of the 20 cities were up month-to-month compared with seven in May. Nevertheless, not one market is showing a positive return over the past 12 months and seven of the metro areas are reporting declines in excess of 20.0%.”

At the national level, the housing market peaked around June/July of 2006. As of June 2008, two years later, the 10-City Composite has fallen by 20.3% and the 20-City Composite is down 18.8%. Las Vegas remains the weakest market, reporting an annual decline of 28.6%, followed by Miami and Phoenix at -28.3% and -27.9%, respectively. Phoenix was the worst performer for the June to May period, returning -2.6%. The markets that were the high-flyers during the recent real estate boom continue to be the ones that are leading the current decline. On the plus side, Denver and Boston were the best performing markets for the month, returning +1.5% and +1.2%, respectively. Both these markets have had three consecutive months of positive returns. They are outdone by Charlotte and Dallas, however, which have recorded four consecutive months of positive returns. Although there are some improving regional numbers, the picture of the overall residential real estate market remains weak.

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Posted by Dean Bettencourt on August 28th, 2008 1:08 PMPost a Comment

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