S&P Dow Jones Indices released the latest results for the S&P/Case-Shiller Home Price Indices, the leading measure of U.S. home prices. Data released for January 2015 show that home prices continued their rise across the country over the last 12 months. However, monthly data reveal slowing increases and seasonal weakness.
Both the 10-City and 20-City Composites saw year-over-year increases in January compared to December. The 10-City Composite gained 4.4% year-over-year, up from 4.3% in December. The 20- City Composite gained 4.6% year-over-year, compared to a 4.4% increase in December. The S&P/Case-Shiller U.S. National Home Price Index, which covers all nine U.S. census divisions, recorded a 4.5% annual gain in January 2015 versus a 4.6% increase in December 2014.
The National index declined for the fifth consecutive month in January, reporting a -0.1% change for the month. Both the 10- and 20-City Composites reported virtually flat month-over-month changes. Of the nine cities that reported increases, Charlotte, Miami, and San Diego led all cities in January with increases of 0.7%. San Francisco reported the largest decrease of all 20 cities, with a month- over-month decrease of -0.9%. Seattle and Washington D.C. reported decreases of -0.5%. Unusually cold and wet weather may have weakened activity in some cities.
Chart 1 above depicts the annual returns of the U.S. National, the 10-City Composite and the 20-City Composite Home Price Indices. The S&P/Case-Shiller U.S. National Home Price Index, which covers all nine U.S. census divisions, recorded a 4.5% annual gain in January 2015. The 10- and 20-City Composites reported year-over-year increases of 4.4% and 4.6%.