Home price gains running out of steam? | South Salem NY Real Estate

All three home price indices maintained by S&P/Case-Shiller finished 2012 with strong gains, but showed signs of losing momentum in the final three months of the year.

Case-Shiller’s National Home Price Index was up 7.3 percent from a year ago in the fourth quarter. The 20-City and 10-City Composite indices saw annual gains in December of 7.3 percent, 6.8 percent and 5.9 percent, respectively.

It was the seventh month in a row that the 20-City Composite posted an annual gain, with every market in the index except New York up for the year.

The National Home Price Index, after strong second and third quarters, slipped 0.3 percent from the third quarter to the fourth on a non seasonally-adjusted basis. When adjusted for seasonal factors, the national composite posted a 2 percent gain from the third quarter to the fourth.

The 20-City and 10-City composites were essentially flat from November to December, each growing by 0.2 percent on a non-seasonally adjusted basis. If adjusted for seasonal factors, those indices were up 0.9 percent from November to December.

David Blitzer, chairman of the index committee S&P Dow Jones Indices, said home prices ended 2012 “with solid gains,” but warned that future growth might not be as dramatic.

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