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FHFA Price Index Flat in April

The Federal Housing Finance Agency (FHFA) released its latest home price measure this week, reinforcing a theme of slowing increases reported in similar gauges. According to the agency, home prices showed no change month-over-month in April, down from an increase of 0.7 percent the month prior.

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Mortgage Applications Slip Further

Mortgage applications continued to backslide last week, though not as quickly as before, the Mortgage Bankers Association (MBA) reported. The group's Market Composite Index, a measure of loan application volumes, fell 1.0 percent on a seasonally adjusted basis for the week ending June 20. The decline brings application levels back down to their lowest in two months.

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First-Quarter GDP Shrinks at Fastest Rate Since 2009

In its third and final estimate of first-quarter growth, the Department of Commerce recorded an annualized 2.9 percent decline in GDP throughout the year's first months. While analysts expected GDP growth to shrink further following the last estimate of a 1.0 percent decline, the reported number represents a sharper downturn than the 1.8 percent contraction that had been forecast.

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Listings, Prices Continue to Rise in Florida

Florida's housing market had more new listings, an increase in median prices, and an uptick in inventory in May, according to Florida Realtors. "Right now, the market offers a great opportunity for sellers, who are seeing nearly 93 percent of their asking price at the closing table. And mortgage rates, though rising, remain historically low—giving consumers more buying power," said 2014 Florida Realtors president Sherri Meadows.

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Refinance Volume Lifts Slightly in April

Overall refinance volume rose slightly in April, but remained at levels more comparable to those seen in 2008, according to the latest from FHFA. Roughly 20,000 refinances were completed through the Home Affordable Refinance Program (HARP) in April, bringing total HARP refinances to approximately 3.2 million since the program's inception.

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Consumer Confidence Continues to Increase in June

Consumers are continuing to progress on the long journey toward restoring their faith in the American economy, according to a monthly Consumer Confidence Index report released by the Conference Board. The index, one of the leading predictors of economic growth in all sectors of the economy, now stands at 85.2, up from 82.2 in May. The largely positive findings could indicate that consumers are more ready to commit to larger, longer-term purchases.

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New Home Sales Shoot Up 18.6% in May

Sales of new single-family homes blew past all expectations in May even as prices and inventory continued to present a challenge. According to figures released Tuesday by the Census Bureau, new home sales last month were at a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 504,000, representing an 18.6 percent spike above April's downwardly revised rate of 425,000.

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Case-Shiller Price Indices Hit Brakes in April

In its latest S&P/Case-Shiller Home Price Indices report, S&P Dow Jones Indices recorded an annual price increase of 10.8 percent among both the 10- and 20-city composites. Those figures compare to year-over-year increases of 12.6 percent and 12.4 percent, respectively. A consensus of economists surveyed by Econoday called for a gain of 11.4 percent in the 20-city index.

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Massachusetts, Georgia Lead in April Price Gains

Just ahead of Tuesday's S&P/Case-Shiller Indices report, Black Knight Financial Services released its own Home Price Index (HPI) for April, recording a slight dip in price increases compared to March. According to Black Knight, the company's latest HPI—based on April transactions—registered $236,000 for the entire United States, a monthly increase of 0.9 percent compared to March's 1.0 percent gain.

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