9 SEPTEMBER 2011 BY CHART OF THE DAY
The struggling real estate market remains a concern for investors. For some perspective on home prices, today’s chart presents the median single-family home price divided by the price of one ounce of gold. This results in the home / gold ratio or the cost of the median single-family home in ounces of gold. For example, it currently takes a relatively low 94 ounces of gold to buy the median single-family home. This is dramatically less than the 601 ounces it took back in 2001. When priced in gold, the median single-family home is down 84% from its 2001 peak (to a level last seen in 1980) and remains well within the confines of a six-year accelerated downtrend and continues to close in on its 1980 trough.