House prices as measured by the Federal Housing Finance Agency's House Price Index (HPI) rose for the third consecutive month in June, posting a gain of 0.9% over May. Prices were down 4.3% from June, 2010, however.

The HPI, a lagging indicator based on sales of homes with conforming mortgages backed by Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, stood at 183.7, with a reading of 100 equal to the average price in January, 1991. Prices were 18.8% below their April, 2007 peak, FHFA said.

For the second quarter, prices fell 0.6%, according to the agency's quarterly analysis, a lesser drop than the 2.58% decline in the first quarter of 2011. Prices were down 5.93% from the end of June, 2010.

Regionally by Census division, compared to May, prices were down 0.8% in the Pacific, up 0.2% in the Mountain, up 1.0% in the West North Central, up 0.9% in the West South Central, up 3.3% in the East North Central, up 0.9% in the East South Central, down 0.4% in New England, up 1.2% in the Middle Atlantic and up 0.6% in the south Atlantic.

All divisions were down year-over-year. The Pacific was off 8%, Mountain down 7.9%, West North Central down 4.4%, West South Central down 0.6%, East North Central down 1.9%, East South Central down 2.7%, New England off 2.4%, the Middle Atlantic down 2.7% and the South Atlantic down 6.4%.

In terms of holding value, New England continued in the No. 1 spot with an index of 203.4, followed by the Mountain at 202.4 and the Middle Atlantic at 201.7. However, FHFA this month introduced expanded indices that use external data, much of it obtained from DataQuick. The data is incomplete for many states, but the expanded report shows the Middle Atlantic in first place, having gained 100.22% in prices since January, 1991, with New England second with a gain of 97.78% and the Mountain division with a rise of 97.36%.