Tuesday, February 24, 2015

Case-Shiller: National House Price Index increased 4.6% year-over-year in December

by Bill McBride on 2/24/2015 09:05:00 AM

S&P/Case-Shiller released the monthly Home Price Indices for December ("December" is a 3 month average of October, November and December prices).

This release includes prices for 20 individual cities, two composite indices (for 10 cities and 20 cities) and the monthly National index.

Note: Case-Shiller reports Not Seasonally Adjusted (NSA), I use the SA data for the graphs.

From S&P: Home Prices Grew at Twice the Rate of Inflation in 2014 According to the S&P/Case-Shiller Home Price Indices

Data released today for December 2014 shows a slight uptick in home prices across the country. Nine cities reported monthly increases in prices ... Both the 10-City and 20-City Composites saw year-over-year increases in December compared to November. The 10-City Composite gained 4.3% year-over-year, up from 4.2% in November. The 20-City Composite gained 4.5% year-over-year, compared to a 4.3% increase in November. The S&P/Case-Shiller U.S. National Home Price Index, which covers all nine U.S. census divisions, recorded a 4.6% annual gain in December 2014 versus 4.7% in November.
...
The National index was slightly negative in December, while both composite Indices were positive. Both the 10- and 20-City Composites reported slight increases of 0.1%, while the National Index posted a -0.1% change for the month. Miami and Denver led all cities in December with increases of 0.7% and 0.5% respectively. Chicago and Cleveland offset those gains by reporting decreases of -0.9% and -0.5% respectively.
...
“The housing recovery is faltering. While prices and sales of existing homes are close to normal, construction and new home sales remain weak. Before the current business cycle, any time housing starts were at their current level of about one million at annual rates, the economy was in a recession” says David M. Blitzer, Managing Director and Chairman of the Index Committee at S&P Dow Jones Indices. “The softness in housing is despite favorable conditions elsewhere in the economy: strong job growth, a declining unemployment rate, continued low interest rates and positive consumer confidence.
Case-Shiller House Prices Indices Click on graph for larger image.

The first graph shows the nominal seasonally adjusted Composite 10, Composite 20 and National indices (the Composite 20 was started in January 2000).

The Composite 10 index is off 16.7% from the peak, and up 0.8% in December (SA).

The Composite 20 index is off 15.6% from the peak, and up 0.9% (SA) in December.

The National index is off 8.4% from the peak, and up 0.7% (SA) in December.  The National index is up 23.7% from the post-bubble low set in Dec 2011 (SA).

Case-Shiller House Prices Indices The second graph shows the Year over year change in all three indices.

The Composite 10 SA is up 4.3% compared to December 2013.

The Composite 20 SA is up 4.5% year-over-year..

The National index SA is up 4.6% year-over-year.

Prices increased (SA) in all 20 of the 20 Case-Shiller cities in December seasonally adjusted.  (Prices increased in 9 of the 20 cities NSA)  Prices in Las Vegas are off 41.6% from the peak, and prices in Denver and Dallas are at new highs (SA).

This was close to the consensus forecast for a 4.7% YoY increase for the National index. I'll have more on house prices later.