Case-Shiller 20-city Home-price Index Up 0.5% In February

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U.S. house prices picked up in February, rising 0.5%, according to the S&P/Case-Shiller 20-city composite index released Tuesday. Among the 16 cities that saw home prices rise, San Francisco and Denver had the fastest growth. Meanwhile, Cleveland posted the sharpest price drop, falling 1%. After seasonal adjustments, home prices rose 0.9% in February, matching January's gain. Compared with February 2014, prices for the 20-city index were up 5% -- the fastest growth in half a year. "Home prices continue to rise and outpace both inflation and wage gains," said David Blitzer, chairman of the index committee at S&P Dow Jones Indices, in a statement. Economists polled by Dow Jones Newswires had expected year-over-year price growth of 4.8% in February. Through February home prices were about 16% below a 2006 peak.

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