Record Home Price Decline in November, FHFA Says

A wealth of other home price data has shown that November and December were rough months for the nation’s varied housing markets; new data released Thursday morning by the Federal Housing Finance Agency shows that housing woes are continuing to extend their reach into conforming lending markets, as well. U.S. home prices for homes with mortgage owned or backed by Fannie Mae (FNM) or Freddie Mac (FRE) fell 1.8 percent on a seasonally-adjusted basis from October to November, the FHFA said, more than the 1.1 percent decline in the prior month. For the 12 months ending in November, U.S. prices fell 8.7 percent; home prices have now fallen 10.5 percent since their peak in April 2007, under the FHFA data. Across nine census divisions, four posted price declines between Oct. and Nov. of greater than 2 percent: Pacific, Mountain, West North Central, and South Atlantic divisions. In October, only one division — the long-suffering Pacific, which includes California — had posted such a steep drop. All nine divisions posted declines in November, the FHA reported. Prices in November now roughly correspond to home values last seen in March 2005, according to the report. And if our premonitions are correct, we still have further to fall in the months ahead. Read the full report here. Write to Paul Jackson at Disclosure: The author held no relevant investment positions when this story was published. Indirect holdings may exist via mutual fund investments. HW reporters and writers follow a strict disclosure policy, the first in the mortgage trade.

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