Case-Shiller Home Prices End Four-Month Losing Streak, Rebound More Than Expected In March

Tyler Durden's picture

Following the fourth consecutive decline in home prices as reported by Case Shiller (remember, it was the weather), it was inevitable that in the last month of Q1, when the weather warmed up and when Americans went on a spending spree that took their savings rate to the lowest since 2009, home prices, those tracked by the Case Shiller index, would post a rebound. Which they did: According to the just released Top 20 City Composite Index, home prices bounced by 0.88%, higher than expected, with the composite printing at 166.80, more than the 166.23 forecast, following fourth consecutive sequential declines. This represented a better than expected 12.37% annual price increase, even if the pace of annual price increases appears to be slowing: this was the lowest annual price increase since August.

Case Shiller's take:

“The year-over-year changes suggest that prices are rising more slowly,” says David M. Blitzer, Chairman of the Index Committee at S&P Dow Jones Indices. “Annual price increases for the two Composites have slowed in the last four months and 13 cities saw annual price changes moderate in March. The National Index also showed decelerating gains in the last quarter. Among those markets seeing substantial slowdowns in price gains were some of the leading boom-bust markets including Las Vegas, Los Angeles, Phoenix, San Francisco and Tampa.


“Despite signs of decelerating prices, all cities were higher than a year ago and all but New York were higher in March than in February. However, only Denver and Dallas have set new post-crisis highs and they experienced relatively lower peak levels than other cities. Four locations are fairly close to their previous highs: Boston (8%), Charlotte (9%), Portland (13%) and San Francisco (15%).


“Housing indicators remain mixed. April housing starts recovered the drop in March but virtually all the gain was in apartment construction, not single family homes. New home sales also rebounded from recent weakness but remain soft. Mortgage rates are near a seven month low but recent comments from the Fed point to bank lending standards as a problem. Other comments include arguments that student loan debt is preventing many potential first time buyers from entering the housing market.”

In other words, just as we have been reporting for the past year: the "schizophrenic" housing market continues: a modest amount of ultra high end purchases keep pushing the average price ever higher as a collapse in transactions in the low end, as most Americans can no longer afford, or simply don't want, to buy a home.

And the visual breakdown:

Source: S&P

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I am more equal than others's picture



how do you spell manipulation?

Headbanger's picture

Would be interesting to see a chart of housing units sold versus price or at least the median and standard deviation values for home sale prices.

power steering's picture

All cash buyers drying up

GrinandBearit's picture

IMO, the Fed is funneling money through the back door to RE "investors".

NoDebt's picture

BUY EVERYTHING!  (Except, of course, GLD or IAU, unless you like having your ass handed to you)

g'kar's picture

We need to weather the weather whether or not the weather improves.

young turk's picture

simple people are buying houses rather than hold dollars but they neglect to factor in high taxes fuel maint. etc to carry the place

whoisonfirst's picture

If there are any consumers or investors with money left and we are faced with inflation? Why not buy?

young turk's picture

why not because when and if hyperinflation hits carrying the house will be very difficult metals are beaten down and a much better buy in my opinion

GrinandBearit's picture

Shiller is a shill.

greatbeard's picture

Shit is on fire.  I'm not real happy about it but I can take consolation in the fact that two years ago I decided to substantially improve my homesead.  If I was still in my old place, much as I loved it, I'd be really pissed watching the train leave the station.  I'm participating in this bogus bull shit but I don't like it one bit. 

orangegeek's picture

Philly Housing Index - a market traded index of home building related companies - shows recent upside that should end soon.


Case Shiller is survey based - different approach, same outcome.

starman's picture

here in one of the pretty towns of Comifornia inventory went from last years 80 ubermillion dollarz homes to 150 ubermillion dollarz home. hm? what coulda happened?

ZackAttack3's picture

Toll Brothers profit more than doubles on "Housing Recovery" (for the 1%ers).  Average house built now sells for over $700K.