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US home prices grow just 5.5 percent in April, missing analysts' expectations

  • The U.S. National Home Price NSA Index reports a 5.5 percent annual gain in April, down slightly from 5.6 percent in March, according to data from S&P CoreLogic Case-Shiller.
  • Growth in the 10-city and 20-city composite groups were also down.
  • Seattle, Portland and Dallas reported the highest year-over-year gains among the 20 cities.

U.S. home prices rose slightly less than anticipated in April, according to the S&P/Case-Shiller U.S. National Home Price Index.

The national home price index increased 5.5 percent in April, versus 5.8 percent in March. Analysts were expecting an increase of 5.9 percent for the month, according to Thomson Reuters consensus estimates.

The widely tracked 20-city home price index rose 5.7 percent from April 2016. In March, its yearly gain was 5.9 percent, the sharpest gain since July 2014.

Seattle, Portland, Oregon, and Dallas reported the highest year-over-year gains in April. Cleveland reported the smallest gain at 3.4 percent.

David M. Blitzer, managing director and chairman of the index committee at S&P Dow Jones Indices, said the April increase in prices shows demand for homes is rising but the supply of homes has hardly kept up.

"The question is not if home prices can climb without any limit; they can't," Blitzer said in a statement. "Rather, will home price gains gently slow or will they crash and take the economy down with them? For the moment, conditions appear favorable for avoiding a crash."

The S&P CoreLogic Case-Shiller Indices is a monthly report published on the last Tuesday of each month. It tracks the prices of typical single-family homes located in each metropolitan area provided.