US house prices grow again in June

US house prices rose by more than expected in July, according to official data (release).

The Federal Reserve’s housing price index rose by 0.7 per cent in July compared to the month before, following a revised 0.8 per cent increase in the month to June. Analysts had expected to see a bigger slowdown to 0.6 per cent growth.

The June figure meant that, in the second quarter of the year, the house price index rose by 2.1 per cent from the previous quarter and 7.2 per cent year-on-year.

Yesterday, it was reported that existing home sales rose by 17.2 per cent compared with July 2012 – the biggest annual increase in three years.

Commenting yesterday, Capital Economics property economist Paul Diggle noted that rising house prices and improved selling conditions were behind the increase in inventory numbers.