Case-Shiller: Home prices rising at pre-recession rate

ANTIOCH, CA - Real estate for sale signs are seen in front of homes that were foreclosed along Catanzaro Way October15, 2007 in Antioch, California. New data from the Case-Shiller index shows prices in January 2013 rose at the fastest rate since the summer of 2006, before the housing bubble popped.</p>

ANTIOCH, CA - Real estate for sale signs are seen in front of homes that were foreclosed along Catanzaro Way October15, 2007 in Antioch, California. New data from the Case-Shiller index shows prices in January 2013 rose at the fastest rate since the summer of 2006, before the housing bubble popped.

The housing market is continuing its recovery, with home prices rising at a rate seen before the start of the housing collapse.

The Case-Shiller index, the most widely followed measure of home prices, shows prices in January rose at the fastest rate since the summer of 2006.

The index showed a 6.8 percent year-over-year gain in December.

Several cities hit hard by the housing collapse are now posting the strongest price recoveries.

Phoenix led the group with a 23 percent price increase while Las Vegas home prices were up 15 percent.

Despite the gains, both the 20-city index and the 10-city index remain about 30 percent below their peak of June/July 2006.

The data, released Tuesday, put the median price for a new home sold in February at $246,800, up 2.9 percent from a year ago.

A separate report out Tuesday is further good news for a housing recovery. New home sales dipped slightly in February, falling by 4.6 percent to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 411,000.

The drop was not unexpected after a strong January. Even with the drop in February, sales were 12.3 percent higher year-on-year.