Mixed results for U.S. housing

Overall, U.S. home prices in the second quarter showed mixed results in the index, dropping 5.9% from a year earlier but rising 3.6% from the previous quarter.The index shows home prices are now back to 2003 levels following a record low decline of 18.9% in the first quarter of 2009.

All 20 cities in the index showed monthly gains in June, with the overall index up 1.1%. Chicago and Minneapolis reported the largest gains, up 3.2% month-to-month. But they were still down 7.4% and 10.8% respectively from last year.

While eight cities in the index bottomed in 2009 and have since remained above their lows, others such as Las Vegas, Phoenix and Miami continue to struggle. Three California cities – San Francisco, Los Angeles and San Diego – are two years or more past the bottom, and all three are 6% above their low points, said David Blitzer, chairman of the index committee at S&P Indices. “Even with modest declines in the past year, these look better off,” he wrote on his blog.

Detroit remains the lowest on the index at 65.42, down 6.6% from last year. Washington DC remains on top at 183.61, down 1.2% from last year, followed by Los Angeles at 169.66, down 3.4% from last year.

The index measures single family home prices using the repeat sales methodology.

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