Case-Shiller: Housing Price Decline Accelerates in March

Housing prices for the first quarter dropped 14% year-over-year and 6.7% quarter-over-quarter as measured by the S&P Case-Shiller index, representing the largest drop in the index’s 20-year history.

March dropped 14% year-over-year, representing a continued acceleration in price declines:

December: -9%
January: -11%
February: -13%
March: -14%


“The steep downturn in residential real estate continues,” David M. Blitzer, chairman of S&P’s index committee, said. He added, “There are very few silver linings that one can see in the data. Most of the nation appears to remain on a downward path.”

Earlier good news…

…Earlier this month, the Commerce Department offered the latest sign that the struggling U.S. housing market may hold back economic growth for much of the year. While home construction unexpectedly jumped 2.5% in April follows months of bad weather that held back many builders, permits declined 8.9% from March to an annual rate of 1.43 million, marking the largest percentage drop since a 24% tumble in February 1990. Permits are now down 41% from their 2005 peak. Housing permits, which are down 28% from a year ago, predict the market’s direction better than housing starts.

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