Boston Home Prices Remain Positive in New Case-Shiller


Home prices remained positive in the latest Case-Shiller, though they exhibited definite signs of easing.

Home prices in the Boston area were up 0.2 percent monthly and 5.7 percent year-over-year in Standard & Poor’s latest Case-Shiller Home Price Indices, with data through July.

Though still positive, Boston’s returns were weaker than in month’s past, and that was a common theme in the latest indices; indeed, 19 of the 20 cities that S&P tracks saw their annual returns lessen from the previous month.

Case-Shiller Home Price Indices – Slowing Down

The national findings in the Case-Shiller were largely consistent with our local findings:

  • The 10- and 20-City Composites rose 0.6 and 0.5 percent from June to July.
  • Seventeen of the 20 cities tracked saw smaller monthly increases in July, and only one city, New York, saw its prices rise more than one percent (in San Francisco, prices actually fell 0.4 percent).
  • Meanwhile, the 10- and 20-City Composites rose 6.7 percent, which though positive is a far cry from the double-digit spectacles that the composites showed in 2013.

Blitzer –”Broad-Based Deceleration” Continues

David M. Blitzer, the chairman of the Index Committee at S&P Dow Jones Indices, said that even with home prices decelerating, they continue to rise beyond market fundamentals.

“The broad-based deceleration in home prices continued in the most recent data,” Blitzer said. “However, home prices continue to rise at two to three times the rate of inflation. The slower pace of home price appreciation is consistent with most of the other housing data on housing starts and home sales. The rise in August new home sales – which are not covered by the S&P/Case-Shiller indices – is a welcome exception to recent trends.

As we’ve reported before, there are distinct caveats to such price increases (namely, home prices continue to move beyond the reach of the middle class), but it will be interesting to see where prices head in 2014’s final months.

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