The Federal Housing Finance Agency's (FHFA's) House Price Index (HPI) for September slowed to its lowest level since January, 6.3 percent and the month-over-month increase of 0.3 percent was also a recent low. The October HPI, released on Thursday, probably erased any thoughts that the rate of appreciation might be slowing.
The agency said home prices rose, on a seasonally adjusted basis, in October by 0.5 percent from September, and that month's results were revised upward to 0.5 percent as well. Prices were up for the 12 months ended in October by 6.6 percent. The average year-over-year increase for the first 10 months of 2017 is 6.41 percent.
The FHFA monthly HPI is calculated using home sales price information from mortgages sold to, or guaranteed by, Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac. The index number itself was set at 100 on January 1, 1991. In January 2017 the index was at 242.2. The October reading is 254.7.
Of the nine census divisions only one, the West North Central Division, did not see prices increase on a monthly basis; that HPI declined by 0.4 percent. The largest increase was an impressive 2.8 percent in the East South Central Division (Kentucky, Alabama, Tennessee, Mississippi).
The 12-month changes were all positive. The smallest gain was again in the West North Central Division (North Dakota, South Dakota, Minnesota, Nebraska, Iowa, Kansas, Missouri) at 4.8 percent. The highest was 8.7 percent in the Pacific division.