The housing slump deepened in September as home prices plummeted, posting a record 4.5% decline from third quarter 2006 to third quarter 2007, Marketwatch reports. The 1.7% decline from the second to the third quarter was also a record in the 21 years the bellwether index has been in use. "There is no real positive news in today's data," said Robert Shiller, who co-developed the index.
Prices fell in all 20 cities studied included in the index, a new and worrisome development in the current cycle. "We judge the recent decline in home prices to be the beginning of an extended decline," said a Lehman Brothers economist. Other analysts speculated that the housing price drop, especially if it continues, could drag down consumer confidence and spending.