US home prices see best yearly gain since 2006
NEW YORK (REUTERS) - US home prices rose in November to rack up their best yearly gain since the housing crisis began, a further sign that the sector is on the mend.
But data on consumer confidence was less encouraging, with moods falling to their lowest level in more than a year as Americans became more pessimistic about the economic outlook and their financial prospects in the wake of higher taxes for many.
The S&P/Case Shiller composite index of 20 metropolitan areas gained 0.6 per cent in November on a seasonally adjusted basis, in line with economists' forecasts. Prices in the 20 cities rose 5.5 per cent year over year, making for the strongest yearly price increase since August 2006 when prices were on their way down.
The housing market became a bright spot for the United States economy last year as prices rose and inventory tightened. The sector is expected to contribute to economic growth this year.