Home Prices Flat in September from Month Prior

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U.S. single-family home prices showed a stronger-than-expected rise in September on a year-over-year basis, but indicated a deceleration from the prior month, a closely watched survey said on Tuesday.

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The S&P/Case Shiller composite index of 20 metropolitan areas gained 4.9 percent in September over the prior year. A Reuters poll of economists forecast a 4.6 percent increase.

On a seasonally adjusted monthly basis, prices in the 20 cities rose 0.3 percent for the month. A Reuters poll of economists had forecast an increase of 0.1 percent.

Non-seasonally adjusted prices were unchanged in the 20 cities on a monthly basis, short of expectations calling for for a 0.2 percent rise.

"The overall trend in home price increases continues to slow down," David Blitzer, chairman of the index committee at S&P Dow Jones Indices, said in a statement.

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"With the economy looking better than a year ago, the housing outlook for 2015 is stable to slightly better."

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A broader measure of national housing market activity that S&P/Case-Shiller is now releasing on a monthly basis rose at a slower pace year over year, coming in at 4.8 percent.

The seasonally adjusted 10-city gauge rose 0.3 percent in September versus a 0.2 percent drop in August, while the non-adjusted 10-city index was unchanged for the month compared to a 0.2 percent rise in August. (Reporting by Chuck Mikolajczak; Editing by Chizu Nomiyama)