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Kelly Bennett has written several words about today’s release of the Case-Shiller index for January, so I’ll largely just supplement with a few charts.

Here is a look at the decline from the peak for all three price tiers:

Note that the high-priced tier once again fell hardest last month. Relative weakness in this tier is a fairly new development, as the graph makes clear.

Moving on, here is a long-term view of the three tiers:

This next table indicates how far back in time home prices have gone by this measure, both in nominal terms and adjusted for Consumer Price Index inflation:

And finally, here is a look at the year-over-year rate of change for each tier as well as the aggregate price index:

The price declines have decelerated for the low- and middle-priced tiers, whereas the high tier just weighed in with its worst year-over-year decline yet.

You may have noticed that the cutoffs for what qualifies as “high-priced” or “mid-priced” keep dropping each month. This is partly caused by the home price declines themselves, but also by the surge in sales of low-priced homes. I’m going to explore this topic a bit more in a future post.

— RICH TOSCANO

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