Case-Shiller: House prices up for second month

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The data from the S&P/Case-Shiller Home Price Indices for June 2009 were released at 9AM ET, showing that house prices in the US increased for the second consecutive month.  Last month marked the first month since July 2006 that prices rose in the US. While prices should rise during the spring and summer, the most buoyant period for residential property, the rise in prices does mark a break with the three-year downward trend.

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Moreover, fully 18 of 20 markets in the index showed a rise in prices, demonstrating that the trend is broad-based.  Only Las Vegas and Detroit saw declining overall prices in June.  Nevertheless, on a year-over-year basis prices still are off by a considerable margin, 15.1% for the Composite-10 index and 15.4% for the Composite-20 index. Moreover, the continued weakness is the jobs picture necessarily means that the wave of foreclosures which has contributed to inventory is far from over.

Overall, the data have to be seen as positive – another sign that the residential property market in the US is stabilizing.

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