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Major home price composites end 2011 at record lows

Major home price composites ended 2011 near record lows.

Major home price composites ended 2011 near record lows.

According to the recently released S&P Indices for its S&P/Case-Shiller Home Price Indices, which is the leading measure of U.S. home prices, all three headline composites showed record-low numbers at the end of 2011.

The national composite decreased by 3.8 percent during the fourth quarter of 2011 and was down 4 percent compared with the fourth quarter of 2010.

"In terms of prices, the housing market ended 2011 on a very disappointing note," says David M. Blitzer, chairman of the Index Committee at S&P Indices. "With this month's report we saw all three composite hit new record lows. While we thought we saw some signs of stabilization in the middle of 2011, it appears that neither the economy nor consumer confidence was strong enough to move the market in a positive direction as the year ended."

The latest data showed that all three composites are at the lowest levels since the housing crisis began in 2006.

Home prices also fell in the fourth quarter of 2011, according to the Federal Housing Finance Agency. Americans are taking advantage of the affordable prices and packing up to move into their dream homes despite the economy still being stagnant.