US metro property sales continue to sink

The latest Standard & Poors Case-Shiller indexes are out, painting a picture of the poor state of the housing market at the end of 2010. The index of 10 major metro areas fell 0.8 percent from October to November, while the 20-city index fell 1 percent between the same months. Only one metro area eked out a gain month-over-month: San Diego, up 0.1 percent.

Year-over-year results were weak as well. For the 10-city index, prices were down 0.4 percent compared with November 2009, while the 20-city index lost 1.6 percent over the same period. Only four metro areas gained in home values between November 2009 and the same month a year later: Washington, DC (up 3.5 percent); San Diego (up 2.6 percent); Los Angeles (up 2.1 percent); and San Francisco (up 0.4 percent).

Separately, the Federal Housing Finance Agency said on Tuesday that homes with mortgages owned or backed by Fannie Mae or Freddie Mac lost no ground in November compared with October. Such houses did lose 4.3 percent in value year-over-year, however, according to the FHFA.