DEFINITION of 'S&P/Case-Shiller Home Price Indexes'

A group of indexes that tracks changes in home prices throughout the United States. The indexes are based on a constant level of data on properties that have undergone at least two arm's length transactions. Case-Shiller produces indexes representing certain metropolitan statistical areas (MSA) as well as a national index.

BREAKING DOWN 'S&P/Case-Shiller Home Price Indexes'

S&P/Case-Shiller Home Price indexes are used as the underlying pricing mechanism in CME housing futures and options. CME housing futures and options trade on different indexes representing 10 different metropolitan statistical areas and a composite index representing 20 metropolitan statistical areas.

This is not to say that the indexes are a perfect representation of the housing market, because only single-family dwellings are included in the calculation. Furthermore, because some of the metropolitan areas are so large (Such as New York City or Los Angelas), having just one value may not accurately represent all areas within that city.

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  1. Is it possible to invest in an index?

    While you cannot buy indexes, which are just benchmarks, there are three ways for you to mirror their performance. Read Answer >>
  2. How Do I Find Mutual Funds That Track Indexes?

    Two good sources for finding index funds are Fidelity Investments and Vanguard. Read Answer >>
  3. Are arm's length transactions always better than transactions not at arm's length?

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  4. What is the relationship between the PPI and the CPI?

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