GB: Halifax HPI

Thu Jun 07 02:30:00 CDT 2018

Consensus Actual Previous
M/M % change 1.0% 1.5% -3.1%
Yr/Yr % change- 3 mo moving av 1.9% 1.9% 2.2%

House prices staged a partial rebound in May according to the Halifax's latest survey. A 1.5 percent monthly rise was on the strong side of expectations but failed to fully reverse April's unrevised 3.1 percent decline. Over the last three months, annual growth of the HPI was 1.9 percent, down from 2.2 percent last time and the lowest since the three months to February.

However, at least the 3-monthly change moved back above zero and, at 0.2 percent, recorded its first positive print since the three months to January.

House prices remain becalmed in a generally quiet market where sluggish demand continues to compete with tight supply new instructions declined for a twenty-sixth consecutive month in April. More of the same seems likely over coming months with no signs of any near-term shift in supply and demand likely to remain hampered by tight household budgets and Brexit uncertainty.

The Halifax House Price Index (HPI) is the UK's longest running monthly house price measure with data covering the whole country going back to January 1983. The index is based on the largest monthly sample of mortgage data, typically covering around 15,000 house purchases per month, and covers the whole calendar month. In March 2016 Markit announced that it would be acquiring the Halifax HPI from Lloyds Banking Group. Halifax continues to publish the index on behalf of Markit and both the name and methodology remain unchanged.

Home values affect much in the economy - especially the housing and consumer sectors. Periods of rising home values encourage new construction while periods of soft home prices can damp housing starts. Changes in home values play key roles in consumer spending and in consumer financial health. During the first half of this decade sharply rising home prices boosted how much home equity households held. In turn, this increased consumers' ability to spend, based on wealth effects and from being able to draw upon expanding home equity lines of credit.