Report: Annual home price increases slow sharply

Home prices increased in May but they rose at a significantly slower annual pace.

Price gains fell to a single-digit pace in May on an annual basis, the slowest rate since February 2013, according to Standard & Poor's/Case-Shiller 20-city home price index released Tuesday.

The home price index increased 9.3 percent from a year ago, down from 10.8 percent in April and slower than the 9.9 percent expected by economists.

The report covering 10 major cities increased 9.4 percent for the year.

On a monthly basis, the 10- and 20-city indexes each posted gains of 1.1 percent.

For the second consecutive month, all 20 cities showed price increases.

Charlotte, Cleveland, Detroit, Las Vegas, Los Angeles, Miami, Minneapolis, New York and Tampa had larger increases in May than in April.

Charlotte posted its largest monthly gain since April 2013 while Minneapolis, New York and Tampa showed their highest since August 2013.

Dallas and Denver continue to set new peaks while Detroit remains the only city below its January 2000 value.

“Housing has been turning in mixed economic numbers in the last few months,” said David M. Blitzer, chairman of the Index Committee at S&P Dow Jones Indices.

“Prices and sales of existing homes have shown improvement while construction and sales of new homes continue to lag. At the same time, the broader economy and especially employment are showing larger improvements and substantial gains."

Cities in the West and South had some of the biggest increases.

Prices rose 16.9 percent in Las Vegas from a year earlier, the largest gain, followed by a 15.4 percent increase in San Francisco and 13.2 percent in Miami.

Other cities with double-digit increases in May were — San Diego (12.4%), Los Angeles (12.3%), Detroit (11.9%), Atlanta (11.2%), Tampa (10.2%) and Portland (10.0%).

Overall, 18 of 20 cities had lower year-over-year numbers in May than in April. San Francisco and San Diego saw their year-over-year figures decelerate by about 3 percentage points, the report said.

Even with prices taking off in the past year they still remain about 17 percent below the highs hit in mid-2006.