The Federal Housing Finance Agency released their monthly House Price Index for August this week. While the July national number was revised downward from 0.2% to 0.1%, August’s results show a 0.7% August increase and a 4.7% annual increase in home prices in the August report. This is roughly the same level as in June of 2004, and 15.9 percent below the April 2007 peak. Here are the nine Census Divisions and their individual results:
Pacific +3.0%: Hawaii, Alaska, Washington, Oregon, California
Mountain +0.2%: Montana, Idaho, Wyoming, Nevada, Utah, Colorado, Arizona, New
West North Central +0.3%: North Dakota, South Dakota, Minnesota, Nebraska, Iowa, Kansas,
West South Central 0.0%: Oklahoma, Arkansas, Texas, Louisiana
East North Central +0.5%: Michigan, Wisconsin, Illinois, Indiana, Ohio
East South Central -0.5%: Kentucky, Tennessee, Mississippi, Alabama
New England +0.8%: Maine, New Hampshire, Vermont, Massachusetts, Rhode Island,
Middle Atlantic +1.1%: New York, New Jersey, Pennsylvania
South Atlantic 0.0%: Delaware, Maryland, District of Columbia, Virginia, West Virginia,
North Carolina, South Carolina, Georgia, Florida
This index uses the purchase prices of homes with mortgages owned or guaranteed by Fannie Mae or Freddie Mac. Chart traders could view the recovery in prices from January into August as a positive pattern, crossing a line of resistance after a period of consolidation that began in November 2010.
The S&P Case-Shiller Home Price Index is in step with this one, which is not always the case. The July report showed home prices increasing nationally around 1.5%. A very different process and data set is used by this index which frequently results in different results reports on a monthly and quarterly basis.