Home prices are extending their run of strong gains though the overall gain in May was a little softer than prior months, at 1.0 percent which is still quite strong though down from gains of 1.7 and 1.9 percent in the prior two months. May's data show gains across 18 of 20 cities with modest declines in Minneapolis and Cleveland interrupting what had been sweeping gains across the 20 city sample going back to the beginning of the year. Year-on-year, sales show a 12.1 percent gain in May which matches April's recovery high.
Unadjusted data, which are closely followed in this report, tell the same story with the year-on-year rate up 12.2 percent. Monthly data for the unadjusted rate show a 2.4 percent gain reflecting seasonal pricing strength during the summer months.
Home price appreciation is a major plus that's lifting consumer spirits and the economic outlook. Watch for commentary on the housing market in the FOMC statement tomorrow afternoon.
Market Consensus before announcement
The S&P/Case-Shiller 20-city home price index (SA) was up 1.7 percent in April alone and followed a 1.9 percent jump in March. The year-on-year rate was notably strong, at plus 12.0 percent. Gains swept across all cities without exception with strength centered in the West where monthly gains are nearing 3 percent with year-on-year gains reaching 20 percent