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Home Prices Continue Downward Spiral, S&P/Case-Shiller Reports


(WASHINGTON, DC) -- As predicted, single-family home prices continue to fall across the nation, S&P/Case-Shiller reports today. The study covers December 2008. There is no good news in the report.

"The broad downturn in the residential real estate market continues," says David M. Blitzer, Chairman of the Index committee at Standard & Poor's.

"There are very few, if any, pockets of turnaround that one can see in the data."

Blitzer says most of the nation "appears to remain on a downward path, with all of the 20 metro areas reporting annual declines, and eight of those MSA's now with negative rates exceeding 20%.

"If one looks in detail at the annual return data, it can be seen that 13 of the 20 MSA's and the two composites have been reporting consecutive record declines since December 2007.

"The monthly data follows a similar trend, with all of the metro areas reporting at least four consecutive months of negative returns."

Blitzer reports even more discouraging news. From December 2008, average home prices across the U.S. are at similar levels to what they were in the third quarter of 2003.

From the peak in the second quarter of 2006, average home prices are down 26.7%.

The decline in the S&P/Case-Shiller U.S. National Home Price Index - which covers all nine U.S. census divisions - recorded an 18.2% decline in the 4th quarter of 2008 versus the 4th quarter of 2007, the largest in the 21-year history of the S&P/Case-Shiller reports.


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