Case/Shiller

Case-Shiller posts record declines

From Mortgage News Daily:

A national index of home prices reported on Tuesday that the average price for a home has fallen to a level consistent with the final quarter of 2002.

The S&P/Case-Shiller Home Price Index ― which covers 20 metropolitan areas ― showed a price decline of 18.7% in March, suggesting a greater fall in prices than expected. Analysts were looking for an -18.40% reading, following the -18.67% reading for February. The 10-city measure fell a similar 18.6%.

The numbers were even worse on a quarterly basis. The Q1 report ― which covers all nine U.S. census divisions, rather than just 20 metropolitan areas ― recorded a 19.1% decline compared to the first quarter of 2008, marking the steepest fall ever in the 21-year history of the index.

“All 20 metro areas are still showing negative annual rates of change in average home prices with nine of the metro areas having record annual declines,” said David Blitzer, Chairman of the Index Committee at Standard & Poor’s. “Seventeen metro areas recorded a monthly decline in March, with Minneapolis, Detroit and New York posting record monthly declines.”

Blitzer noted that compared to the prior month, nine metropolitan areas reported a price increase.

Still, he summed up the data with a grim assessment: “Based on the March data, however, we see no evidence that that a recovery in home prices has begun.”

Grim news indeed for an industry that has been talking turnaround.

, originally uploaded by Fotologica.

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