June 2024 MBS Highway Housing Index

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John Smith
January 1, 2023
5 min read

The MBS Highway National Housing Index dropped 5 points in June 2024 to 53. This was the second straight monthly decline during what is typically the high season for residential real estate. Stubbornly high (>7%) mortgage rates were to blame.

National Data

The MBS Highway National Housing Index dropped 5 points to 53 in June 2024, from 58 in May 2024. This was the second straight month-over-month decline. In June 2023, the index stood at 58.

Although average 30-year mortgage rates eased slightly in May 2024, they remained well over 7%. Stubbornly high rates, together with higher home prices in most markets, have dampened buyer activity levels during the important spring/summer selling season.

Notably, the national Buyer Activity sub-index dropped 6 points to 45 (below the 50 breakeven point between expansion/contraction). This was the first sub-50 reading since February 2024. The Price Direction sub-index also dropped, falling 4 points to 60. In June 2023, the Buyer Activity and Price Direction sub-indexes were at 53 and 63, respectively.

Regional Data

Six of the seven regions saw declining Buyer Activity levels in June, with the Mid-Atlantic (64 → 47) joining the Northwest (47 → 46), Southwest (41 → 37), and the Southeast (40 → 32) below the 50 breakeven point.

Five out of the seven regions also saw declines in their Price Direction sub-indexes, with only the Northeast (84 → 85) and Northwest (60 → 66) bucking the trend. Two of the regions — the Southeast (which includes Florida) and the Southwest (which includes Texas and Arizona) — saw their Price Direction sub-indexes drop below 50.

The Northeast was the strongest region in terms of both Buyer Activity (75) and Price Direction (85). The Southeast was the weakest region for both Buyer Activity (32) and Price Direction (46).

“The slight downturn in the MBS Highway National Housing Index experienced in May accelerated in June, with more than half of the regions’ Buyer Activity sub-indexes now in contraction territory. We need lower mortgage rates to improve both home affordability and availability, but progress on inflation has been slow recently, giving the Fed no urgency to begin cutting rates,” said Barry Habib, MBS Highway’s Founder and CEO.

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