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Economy in Brief

FHFA Home Price Index Reverses Monthly Gain While Y/Y Loss Eases 
by Tom Moeller  October 23, 2009 

The decline in home prices continued to moderate according the U.S. House Price Index from the Federal Housing and Finance Agency (FHFA). The Purchase Only Index for August fell 0.3% and reversed its July increase. Nevertheless, the year-to-year decline in the nationwide average of home prices eased to -3.6% from its worst reading of -8.8% last November. Since their peak in early-2007 home prices nationwide have fallen 10.7%. The FHFA uses data provided by Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac and is not value-weighted.

Notable monthly declines in home prices during August were logged in the South Atlantic and the New England regions of the country, though the y/y declines have moderated significantly. Conversely, prices in the Mountain and in the Pacific regions recovered m/m but remain down the most of the country's regions versus last August. Prices in the Middle Atlantic and in the East North Central Regions also fell moderately during August but the y/y declines have moderated significantly this year.

In the populous East North Central region prices slipped another 0.6% during August but they were flat year-to-date. Prices also slipped in the West South Central region but have risen slightly since December.

Mideast Oil Exporters Face the Crisis Ahead from the International Monetary Fund can be found here.

FHFA U.S. House Price Index Purchase Only (%) August July Y/Y 2008 2007 2006
Total -0.3 0.3 -3.6 -5.8 1.3 6.0
  New England -1.1 -0.1 -3.4 -4.6 -1.7 1.1
  Middle Atlantic -0.6 0.9 -2.8 -2.3 1.9 6.3
  East North Central -0.6 -0.1 -3.4 -4.4 -1.3 1.8
  West North Central 0.2 0.1 1.0 -2.8 1.0 3.2
  South Atlantic -1.6 1.2 -5.5 -7.1 1.4 7.1
  East South Central 0.4 -1.1 -0.7 -1.4 3.8 7.2
  West South Central -0.0 -0.6 0.4 0.7 4.7 7.2
  Mountain 0.3 -0.0 -7.8 -6.0 4.0 10.6
  Pacific 1.1 0.9 -6.5 -17.3 0.1 9.8
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