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First Cut: FHFA House Price Index reflects acceleration in prices in December

The FHFA House Price Index was up 0.6% in December from November, and up 5.2% compared to a year earlier. Although the increase wasn’t on par with the gains seen in 2017 and 2018, it indicated that narrow supplies of existing homes was creating some renewed upward pressure on prices, and perhaps that refinancings were for higher prices so homeowners could extract some equity. If the housing market remains strong as it appears set to do with mortgage rates at lows not seen in over three years, the trend could push higher again.

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