The much feared double-dip in home prices has materialized nationally. Data through March 2011 show that the National Index hit a new recession low with the first quarter’s data (the prior low was the first quarter 0f 2009, and we define this as the “double-dip”). The S&P/Case-Shiller U.S. National Home Price Index declined by 4.2% in the first quarter of 2011, after having fallen 3.6% in the fourth quarter of 2010. Nationally, home prices are back to their mid-2002 levels. This means that any run-up in home prices between 2002 and the 2006 peak has been erased. On average home prices are selling at the same value they were nine years ago and are 34% below their 2006Q2 peak.
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