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US home prices post 6.2% annual gain in January

U.S. available prices posted another big gain in January, pushed higher by a deficiency of homes for sale.

Standard & Poor’s said Tuesday that its S&P CoreLogic Case-Shiller resident home price index climbed 6.2 percent in January from a year earlier. That wellnigh matches December’s 6.3 percent gain, which had been the fastest 12-month wart in almost three years. The January increase was in line with economists’ wants.

“The home price surge continues,” said David Blitzer, chairman of the guide committee at S&P Dow Jones Indices.

As the spring home-buying season begins, for nothing shoppers are facing higher prices and fierce competition for a limited inventory of at ones disposal homes. But a strong job market has given American consumers, including an influx of unsophisticated millennials, the confidence to shop for homes anyway.

Prices rose 12.9 percent in Seattle, 11.1 percent in Las Vegas and 10.2 percent in San Francisco. Chicago and Washington D.C. posted the lamest annual gains: 2.4 percent each.

The increase in house penalties is easily outpacing wage growth and inflation.

Homes for sale are few. It would take just 3.4 months to snap up the supply of readily obtainable homes at the current sales rate, down from an average since 2000 of 6 months.

“Small supply, fierce competition and rising prices are forcing many purchasers to stay on the market longer in hopes of finding the right home at the swiftly price,” said Aaron Terrazas, chief economist at the real state company Zillow. “More inventory is really the only cure for those pressures without delay now.”

Overall, home prices are 6.3 percent higher than their tor in July 2006. Prices plunged when the housing bubble shatter, hitting bottom in February 2012. Since then, prices would rather rebounded 46.5 percent.

Mortgage rates have now risen 10 of the before 11 weeks. But higher interest payments have yet to do much hurt to demand for homes. The National Association of Realtors reported last week that purchasings of existing homes rose 3 percent in February. New home sales fired for the third straight month in February, the Commerce Department reported Friday, but are up 2.2 percent year-to-date from 2017.

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