Case-Shiller Home Prices: U.S. House Prices Climb for Fourth Consecutive Month

This morning S&P/Case-Shiller released their monthly Home Price Index, a leading measure of changes in the price of homes on the residential real-estate market (NYSE:IYR). The new data covers July 2011, and shows an increase in home prices for the fourth consecutive month for both the 10- and 20-City Composites.

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According to the S&P, housing prices climbed 0.9% in July over June, with 17 of the 20 MSAs and both Composites posting positive monthly increases, with only Las Vegas and Phoenix showing declines while Denver was unchanged. However, on an annual basis, only Detroit and Washington, D.C., posted positive rates of change, up 1.2% and 0.3%, respectively. The remaining 18 MSAs and both City Composites were down in July 2011 compared to July 2010.

The S&P/Case-Shiller report consists of 10-city and 20-city composite rankings for major metropolitan areas. The 10- and 20-City composites posted annual rates of decline of 3.7% and 4.1%, respectively. However, while 18 of the 20 markets are in negative territory compared to 2010, 14 of 20 saw improvements in their annual rates. If better annual results continue through the end of 2011, then S&P might be able to confirm a housing market recovery.