A lot of data out today, starting with the monthly S&P/Case Shiller Home Price Index. The headline there is that for the first time in this housing downturn (and possibly ever), every one of the twenty metro markets the report covers is in the negative on a month-to-month basis. We took a look at the top ten and it’s astounding to see how price appreciation went from 20% year-over-year in November of 2004 to depreciation of 5.5% in September of this year.
I know a lot of you write into the blog complaining that we generalize too much in these numbers and that the media frenzy is causing prices to fall in markets where there is simply no reason for such an effect. Well, that’s all changing.
Sources are telling me that there are local and national factors pushing the numbers. It’s interest rates, the financial markets, and the access to mortgages and mortgage finance that hit every market in the country, whether the market ever boomed in the first place. Consumer confidence is a huge issue as well, and go ahead and blame the media for that if you like, but policymakers, industry experts and industry associations are the ones giving us all the bad news we report.