Data through August 2014, released by S&P Dow Jones Indices for its S&P/Case-Shiller Home Price Indices, the leading measure of U.S. home prices, continue to show a deceleration in home price gains. The 10-City Composite gained 5.5% year-over- year and the 20-City 5.6%, both down from the 6.7% reported for July. The National Index gained 5.1% annually in August compared to 5.6% in July.
On a monthly basis, the National Index and Composite Indices showed a slight increase of 0.2% for the month of August. Detroit led the cities with the gain of 0.8%, followed by Dallas, Denver and Las Vegas at 0.5%. Gains in those cities were offset by a decline of 0.4% in San Francisco followed by declines of 0.1% in Charlotte and San Diego.
The chart 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 5.1% annual gain in August 2014. The 10- and 20- City Composites posted year-over-year increases of 5.5% and 5.6%.
“The deceleration in home prices continues,” says David M. Blitzer, Chairman of the Index Committee at S&P Dow Jones Indices. “The Sun Belt region reported its worst annual returns since 2012, led by weakness in all three California cities — Los Angeles, San Francisco and San Diego. Despite the weaker year-over-year numbers, home prices are still showing an overall increase, as the National Index increased for its eighth consecutive month.
“The large extent of slower increases is seen in the annual figures with all 20 cities; the two composites and the national index all revealing lower numbers than last month. The 10- and 20-City Composites gained 5.5% and 5.6% annually with prices nationally rising at a slower pace of 5.1%. Las Vegas continues to see a sharp deceleration in their annual home prices with a 10.1% annual return, down just below three percent from last month. Miami is now leading the cities with a 10.5% year-over-year return. San Francisco, which has shown double-digit annual gains since November 2012, posted an annual return of 9.0% in August.
“Despite softer price data, other housing data perked up. September figures for housing starts, permits and sales of existing homes were all up. New home sales and builders’ confidence were weaker. Continued labor market gains, low interest rates and slower increases in home prices should support further improvements in housing.