U.S. house prices rose in January, with an increase of 0.5 percent on a seasonally adjusted basis from the previous month, according to the Federal Housing Finance Agency (FHFA) monthly House Price Index (HPI). The seasonally adjusted purchase-only index for the U.S. has shown increases for 23 of the last 24 months, beginning with February 2012. The November 2013 HPI was the exception, with a decrease of 0.1 percent. The previously reported 0.8 percent increase in December was revised downward to reflect a 0.7 percent increase.

The FHFA HPI is calculated using home sales price information from mortgages either sold to or guaranteed by Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac. From January 2013 to January 2014, house prices were up 7.4 percent. The U.S. index is 8.0 percent below its April 2007 peak and is roughly the same as the May 2005 index level.

For the nine census divisions, seasonally adjusted monthly price changes from December 2013 to January 2014 ranged from -0.3 percent in the West South Central division to +1.3 percent in the Middle Atlantic division. The 12-month changes were all positive ranging from +3.2 percent in the Middle Atlantic division to +14.0 percent in the Pacific division.

The next HPI report will be released April 22, 2014 and will include monthly data for February 2014.