According to the Case-Shiller index, residential property values in 20 U.S. cities fell 3.3% from February 2010-2011. This signifies the biggest year-over-year decline since November 2009, landing just shy of the six-year low of April 2009. Until foreclosures abate, home prices can be expected to continue to fall.
According to the Case-Shiller measure, which is based on a three-month average, home prices fell 0.2% in February 2011 from the prior month, after making adjustments for seasonal variations. This signified an eight consecutive decrease. Seattle and Miami led 14 of the 20 cities that posted price declines in February from the previous month. All but one of the 20 cities included in the index showed a year-over-year decline. Washington was the exception, with values climbing 2.7% from the previous year. Phoenix and Minneapolis had the highest decreases in year-over-year property values, with 8.4% and 8.3% respectively. Prices in the residential housing markets in Atlanta, Chicago, Las Vegas, Miami, New York and 5 other cities dropped to fresh lows from their peaks in 2006 and 2007.
In spite of the decreasing prices for residential real estate, the economy appears to be moving in the right direction. The U.S. has experienced 6 straight months of job growth, with unemployment at a 2-year low in March. This serves to sustain consumer purchases, which account for approximately 70% of the economy.
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