The S&P/Case-Shiller Home Price Indices continued their descent in October as 14 of the 20 measured metro areas showed record rates of annual decline. The 10-City and 20-City Composite Indices set new records, with annual declines of 19.1% and 18.0% and month-to month drops of 2.1% and 2.2%, respectively.

"The bear market continues," said David M. Blitzer, chairman of the Index Committee at Standard & Poor¹s. "As of October 2008, the 10-City Composite is down 25.0% from its mid-2006 peak, and the 20-City Composite is down 23.4%. "

The news was bad all over. Three markets--Phoenix (-32.7%), Las Vegas(-31.7%) and San Francisco (-31%)--had the dubious distinction of a drop of 30% or more in a single year. Miami, Los Angeles, and San Diego were close behind with annual declines of 29.0%, 27.9% and 26.7%, respectively. The formerly stable markets of Atlanta, Seattle and Portland joined the "double digit club" with annual declines of 10.5%, 10.2% and 10.1%, respectively.

Six of the MSAs showed their largest monthly decline on record--Atlanta (-2.4%), Charlotte (-1.8%), Detroit (-4.5%), Minneapolis (-3.4%), Tampa(-3.4%) and Washington (-2.7%). The index for Detroit stood at 86.10, meaning home values there have fallen back to 1990's levels. The index is based on a score of 100 fixed at January, 2000.

Dallas and Charlotte faired the best in October in terms of relative year-over-year returns, with declines of 3.0% and 4.4%, respectively, but the rate of decline in both markets is accelerating.

Markets in which home values had doubled since 2000 have now fallen back under an index reading of 200. New York is now the strongest market in terms of value held, with its index sitting at 190.04, a 0.9% drop from September and an annual decline of 7.5%. Boston stood at 159.17, a 1.1% monthly and 6.0% annual decline. Chicago was at 145.49, down 1.6% month-to-month and 10.8% year-over-year. Washington, at 184.92, is down 2.7% and 18.7%, respectively.