The US housing market continued to sag in October as the impact of higher mortgage rates and concerns over the economy rattled buyers and sellers.
Prices fell 0.5% from September, the fourth consecutive monthly decline for a seasonally adjusted measure of home prices in 20 large cities, according to the S&P CoreLogic Case-Shiller index.
The market began downshifting earlier this year as the Federal Reserve started hiking its benchmark interest rate, with the goal of easing high inflation that’s been driven in part by skyrocketing housing costs.
Rates for 30-year, fixed mortgages reached 7.08% in October — and again in November — though they have since retreated, Freddie Mac data show. With borrowing costs roughly double where they were at the start of the year, and inflation leaving less savings to put toward a down payment, homebuyers have pulled back. Sellers are also reluctant to list their properties, yet houses that are on the market are lingering and getting discounted as demand slumps.
The Case-Shiller National Home Price Index “cooled” to 9.24% YoY growth as The Federal Reserve tightens its monetary noose.
Of the top twenty metro areas, both Miami and Tampa Florida were up over 20% YoY. Hot ‘Lanta, Charlotte and Dallas were over 10% YoY. Mordor on the Potomac was up “only” 6% and all other metro areas were under 10%.
But if we look at October/September changes, all metro areas are down (MoM) with San Francisco the worst.
Finally, The Federal Reserve’s massive balance sheet is still out in force.
Look at this chart of the Case-Shiller National home price index again The Fed’s balance sheet. Uh-oh.
Let’s look at San Francisco (my hometown) since The Federal Reserve began interest rate tightening.