According to the S&P/Case Shiller 20-city index, prices rose 0.7% compared with March, although they fell 0.1% when adjusted for the strong spring selling season. Prices were down 4% year-over-year.These Case-Shiller numbers really represent March more than April. The S&P/Case-Shiller indices are trailing 3-month indices. The "April" numbers really represent the combined average of February, March, and April.
"In a welcome shift from recent months, this month is better than last — April's numbers beat March," said David Blitzer, S&P's spokesman, in a statement. "However, the seasonally adjusted numbers show that much of the improvement reflects the beginning of the spring-summer home buying season."
I think you guys all know I much prefer year-over-year numbers to month-over-month numbers. The longer time span makes them far less volatile, plus they are automatically seasonally adjusted.
That said, the non-seasonally-adjusted uptick suggests that spring home sales picked up like clockwork. It also suggests that the whole stock market freakout about a possibly weakening U.S. economy over the past two months may be a bit misplaced. I expect to see the month-to-month non-seasonally-adjusted housing numbers to continue rising over the next 5 months or so.