Monday, February 07, 2011

Radar Watching: December 2010

As I have noted in the past, since the home price index data provided by Radar Logic is more timely, unadjusted and un-smoothed it is particularly useful for gaining deeper visibility over our housing markets especially in light of the distortions created by the massive government tax gimmick and other malfeasance.

By contrast, recognize that because the S&P/Case-Shiller (CSI) data is a two month lagged and a three month moving average, the index data will reflect price movement resulting from the government's housing tax scam (as BostonBubble pointed out) until at least the February 2011 release.

The Radar logic data, on the other hand, while lagged by 60 days is reported daily and, more importantly, is NOT SMOOTHED or adjusted so you can expect to see the underlying trends more precisely and substantially sooner than with the CSI.

As for the latest trends, it’s important to note that the 25-MSA Composite is continuing to show significant year-over-year declines and a slumping direction that appears bound to wipe-out the low value reached in March of 2009 prior to the government's massive housing boondoggle.

The latest data shows that as of early December, prices are 3.15% below the level seen in December 2009.

Further, Radar Logic is predicting that prices may be on the ropes for some time.

"Home prices will not recover on a sustained year-over-year basis until the supply overhang is reduced. If housing demand increases because of improvements in the employment and other sectors of the economy, financial institutions will respond by putting more of the homes in their inventories on the market, and home prices will remain depressed."