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Home prices rose in the second quarter almost as much as they fell in the first, but prices at the end of June still trailed June 2010 levels-which still reflected demand generated by the tax credit boomlet.

Case-Shiller Prices Recover in Second Quarter

Home prices rose in the second quarter almost as much as they fell in the first, but prices at the end of June still trailed June 2010 levels-which still reflected demand generated by the tax credit boomlet.

The S&P/Case-Shiller U.S. National Home Price Index increased by 3.6 percent in the second quarter of 2011, falling 4.1 percent during the first quarter; the Index still posted an annual decline of 5.9 percent from the second quarter of 2010.

The rise and fall of prices so far this year have brought the S&P/Case-Shiller indices virtually even with the levels at the beginning of the year. The 20 city composite price for June, at 141.30, is slightly higher than January’s 140.71. The 10 city composite in June was 154.88 compared to 154.36 in January.

“This month’s report showed mixed signals for recovery in home prices. No cities made new lows in June 2011, and the majority of cities are seeing improved annual rates. The National Index was up 3.6 percent from the 2011 first quarter, but down 5.9% compared to a year-ago,” says David M. Blitzer, Chairman of the Index Committee at S&P Indices. “Looking across the cities, eight bottomed in 2009 and have remained above their lows. These include all the California cities plus Dallas, Denver and Washington DC, all relatively strong markets. At the other extreme, those which set new lows in 2011 include the four Sunbelt cities – Las Vegas, Miami, Phoenix and Tampa – as well as the weakest of all, Detroit.

‘These shifts suggest that we are back to regional housing markets, rather than a national housing market where everything rose and fell together,” said Blitzer.

Other price reports, including NAR, Altos, RE/MAX and CoreLogic reported modest price gains in June on a year over year basis. However, several reports on July prices, including RE/MAX and MRIS in Washington DC, suggest that the trend might have reversed in July.

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