Friday, October 22, 2010

Clear Capital: "Sudden and Dramatic Drop in U.S. Home Prices"

by Bill McBride on 10/22/2010 12:58:00 PM

I usually focus on Case-Shiller and Corelogic repeat sales house price indexes. Case-Shiller is the mostly widely followed, and the Federal Reserve uses Corelogic.

The Clear Capital index is also repeat sales, with a price-per-square-foot model, and is a rolling three months average that can be updated daily. I thought I'd pass along this alert today:

Clear Capital™ Reports Sudden and Dramatic Drop in U.S. Home Prices

“Clear Capital’s latest data through October 22 shows even more pronounced price declines than our most recent HDI market report released two weeks ago,” said Dr. Alex Villacorta, senior statistician, Clear Capital. “At the national level, home prices are clearly experiencing a dramatic drop from the tax credit-induced highs, effectively wiping out all of the gains obtained during the flurry of activity just preceding the tax credit expiration.”

This special Clear Capital Home Data Index (HDI) alert shows that national home prices have declined 5.9% in just two months and are now at the same level as in mid April 2010, two weeks prior to the expiration of the recent federal homebuyer tax credit. This significant drop in prices, in advance of the typical winter housing market slowdowns, paints an ominous picture that will likely show up in other home data indices in the coming months.

... if previous correlations between the Clear Capital and S&P/Case-Shiller indices continue as expected, the next two months will show a similar downward trend in S&P/Case Shiller numbers.
The most recent Case-Shiller numbers were for July (actually a three month average of May, June and July). The August numbers will be released next Tuesday (an average of June, July and August) - so there is a significant lag in the numbers.

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