U.S. home prices set a record monthly rise in April, according to a report released Tuesday by S&P Dow Jones Indices.
The S&P/Case-Shiller Home Price Indices, the leading measure of U.S. home prices, showed average home prices for the 10- and 20-City Composites rose 2.6 percent and 2.5 percent from March to April. On an annual basis, home prices increased 11.6 percent and 12.1 percent for the 10- and 20-City Composites in April, it added.
"The 10- and 20-City Composites posted their highest monthly gains in the history of S&P/CaseShiller Home Price Indices," said David M. Blitzer, chairman of the Index Committee at S&P Dow Jones Indices.
"The recovery is definitely broad-based. The two composites showed the largest year-over-year gains in seven years," Blitzer said.
All 20 cities and both composites showed positive year-over-year returns for at least the fourth consecutive month. Atlanta, Dallas, Detroit and Minneapolis posted their highest annual gains since the start of their respective indices. While on a monthly basis, all cities with the exception of Detroit posted positive change.
Blitzer said: "Last week's comments from the Fed and the resulting sharp increase in Treasury yields sparked fears that rising mortgage rates will damage the housing rebound."
But banks' credit quality standards were more important than the level of mortgage rates in the housing boom, bust and recovery, he added.
Given the most recent Fed Senior Loan Officer Opinion Survey, which shows some banks are easing credit restrictions, "the recovery should continue," Blitzer said.
Meanwhile, the Federal Housing Finance Agency (FHFA) reported Tuesday that U.S. house prices continued its upward momentum in April on a seasonally-adjusted basis.
House prices in April were 0.7 percent higher than a month earlier, marking the 15th consecutive monthly price increase, according to the FHFA's monthly House Price Index.
Over the 12 months ending in April, the house prices rose 7.4 percent, indicating a steady improvement in the U.S. housing market.
House prices edged up in six of nine census divisions in April, and prices of the Pacific area, including Hawaii, Alaska, Washington, Oregon and California, climbed the most by 17.1 percent from a year earlier.
The FHFA also noted that the house prices in April were still 11.7 percent below the April 2007 peak level and roughly the same as the January 2005 level.
The FHFA measured changes in real estate values using purchases of properties with mortgages backed by Fannie Mae or Freddie Mac. It did not provide a specific price for houses.
The U.S. National Association of Realtors reported recently that the median existing home price for all housing types jumped to 208,00 dollars in May, up 15.4 percent from a year earlier.