The latest survey from the S&P/Case-Shiller Home Price Index is out, and no drama here, folks, it shows that prices in 10 major metro areas fell at an annualized 5% rate during August. Or maybe the surprise was that prices didn’t fall further.
Perhaps more chilling were the comments from Robert Shiller, the Yale professor who helped develop the index – and who has been warning of a housing bubble for some time – that were attached to the report:
“At both the national and the metro levels, the fall in home prices is showing no real signs of a slowdown or turnaround,” said Robert Shiller, chief economist at MacroMarkets, who helped develop the index. “There is really no positive news in today’s report, as most of the metro areas are showing signs of declining or vanishing returns on both an annual and monthly basis.”
BusinessWeek editors Chris Palmeri, Prashant Gopal and Peter Coy chronicle the highs and lows of the housing and mortgage markets on their Hot Property blog. In print and online, the Hot Property team first wrote about the potential downside of lenders pushing riskier, "option ARM" mortgages and the rise in mortgage fraud back in 2005—well ahead of many other media outlets. In 2008, Hot Property bloggers finished #1 in a ranking of the world's top 100 "most powerful property people" by the British real estate website Global edge. Hot Property was named among the 25 most influential real estate blogs of 2007 by Inman News.