WASHINGTON (5/28/14)--Home prices continue to climb, but price growth has slowed of late, according to the S&P/Case-Shiller home price index, which tracks data for the 20 largest cities in the U.S.
Home prices rose 0.9% in March with 19 out of the 20 cities seeing heftier price tags on homes, except for New York (MarketWatch May 27).
But year-over-year home price appreciation again dropped in March--down to 12.4% from 12.9% in February--signaling a slowdown in price growth.
"The year-over-year changes suggest that prices are rising more slowly," David Blitzer, S&P Dow Jones Indices committee chairman, told MarketWatch.
In the 10 largest cities, price growth deteriorated even further. The biggest metros posted a 12.6% increase year-over-year in March, compared with 13.1% annually in February.
Moody's analysts believe the deceleration is in line with recent weaknesses in other segments of the housing market, including tepid activity in new-home sales.
"(However) demand-side drivers will keep prices headed in the right direction over the next few years," said Eric Tannenbaum, Moody's analyst (Economy.com May 27). "The labor market will continue to lose slack, boosting incomes and in turn pressuring house prices to the upside."
Though, with home inventories continuing to rise and more existing homes coming on the market, analysts expect price appreciation to continue to slow in the short term.