Home prices off slightly month-to-month

Jan. 29, 2013 at 12:26 PM
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NEW YORK, Jan. 29 (UPI) -- U.S. home prices slipped October to November, but showed strong gains from 12 months earlier, a closely watched price index said.

The Standard & Poor's/Case-Shiller report said prices dropped 0.2 percent from October in a 10-city composite sample of U.S. cities. Prices slid 0.1 percent month-to-month in the report's 20-city sampler.

Prices in the 10-city grouping rose 4.5 percent from November 2011, however, while prices among the larger sampling group rose 5.5 percent.

Nineteen of 20 cities had annual price gains in November. Prices rose 22.8 percent in Phoenix, 12.7 percent in San Francisco, 11.9 percent in Detroit, 1.8 percent in Cleveland, and 0.8 percent in Chicago.

The price index fell 1.2 percent from November 2011 in New York, the only city where prices fell over 12 months.

On a month-to-month basis, prices were down in half the cities monitored in the report.

Prices dropped from October in Boston, Charlotte, N.C., Chicago, Cleveland, Dallas, Detroit, New York, Portland, Ore., Tampa, Fla., and Washington.

Prices rose from October in Atlanta, Denver, Las Vegas, Los Angeles, Miami, Minneapolis, Phoenix, San Diego, San Francisco and Seattle.

"Winter is usually a weak period for housing which explains why we now see about half the cities with falling month-to-month prices compared to 20 out of 20 seeing rising prices last summer," said David Blitzer, chairman of the Index Committee at S&P Dow Jones Indices. "The better annual price changes also point to seasonal weakness rather than a reversal in the housing market. Further evidence that the weakness is seasonal is seen in the seasonally adjusted figures: only New York saw prices fall on a seasonally adjusted basis while Cleveland was flat."

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