The S&P CoreLogic Case-Shiller U.S. National Home Price NSA Index on Tuesday reported a 5.2% annual gain in November, down from 5.3% in the previous month.
The 10- City Composite annual increase came in at 4.3%, down from 4.7% in the previous month. The 20-City Composite posted a 4.7% year-over-year gain, down from 5.0% in the previous month.
Las Vegas, Phoenix and Seattle reported the highest year-over-year gains among the 20 cities. In November, Las Vegas led the way with a 12.0% year-over-year price increase, followed by Phoenix with an 8.1% increase and Seattle with a 6.3% increase. Seven of the 20 cities reported greater price increases in the year ending November 2018 versus the year ending October 2018.
Before seasonal adjustment, the National Index posted a month-over-month gain of 0.1% in November. The 10-City and 20-City Composites both reported a 0.1% decrease for the month. After seasonal adjustment, the National Index recorded a 0.4% month-over-month increase in November. The 10-City Composite and the 20-City Composite both posted 0.3% month-over-month increases. In November, eight of 20 cities reported increases before seasonal adjustment, while 15 of 20 cities reported increases after seasonal adjustment.
“Home prices are still rising, but more slowly than in recent months,” said David M. Blitzer, managing director and chairman of the Index Committee at S&P Dow Jones Indices. “The pace of price increases are being dampened by declining sales of existing homes and weaker affordability. Sales peaked in November 2017 and drifted down through 2018. Affordability reflects higher prices and increased mortgage rates through much of last year. Following a shift in Fed policy in December, mortgage rates backed off to about 4.45% from 4.95%.
“Housing market conditions are mixed while analysts’ comments express concerns that housing is weakening and could affect the broader economy. Current low inventories of homes for sale – about a four-month supply – are supporting home prices. New home construction trends, like sales of existing homes, peaked in late 2017 and are flat to down since then. Stable 2% inflation, continued employment growth, and rising wages are all favorable. Measures of consumer debt and debt service do not suggest any immediate problems.”
NAR Chief Economist Lawrence Yun issued his analysis shortly after the release: “The softening home price appreciation in the latest Case-Shiller index will continue in the upcoming months as housing inventory builds. But it is unlikely for the national median home price to actually decline given the housing shortage of moderately priced homes and from job additions in the economy. In 2019, home prices in many markets look to trail income growth for the first time since 2012. That is a healthy development of keeping housing affordability in check.”