Home Prices up 7.3% for 2012

With December's data in, home prices rose 7.3% for 2012 overall, according to an S&P/Case-Shiller Home Price Index report [link opens in PDF] released today. The report looks at single-family home prices and provides a national picture, a 10-city composite, and a 20-city composite. It uses January 2000 as a benchmark base value of 100.

For December, the seasonally adjusted 20-city composite index rose 0.9% month-over-month to 145.95, squeaking past the consensus analyst estimate and providing another positive data point after November's revised 0.7% bump .

"Home prices ended 2012 with solid gains," said Chairman of the Index Committee David M. Blitzer in a statement today. "Housing and residential construction led the economy in the 2012 fourth quarter. In December's report all three headline composites and 19 of the 20 cities gained over their levels of a year ago. Month-over-month, 9 cities and both Composites posted positive monthly gains. Seasonally adjusted, there were no monthly declines across all 20 cities."

For 2012 overall, Phoenix posted the largest price gains (23%), followed by San Francisco (14.4%) and Detroit (13.6%). New York was the only city that recorded a 2012 price decrease, dropping 0.5% over the last year.

This newest report comes one week after price increases for existing homes hit a seven-year high.

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