Home prices rose almost 1% in July following a 1.2% increase in June, according to the new Standard & Poor's/Case-Shiller house price index.

While values are down 4.1% from July 2010, the non-seasonally adjusted HPI has posted gains over four consecutive months.

However, S&P's index committee chairman David Blitzer remains cautious on his outlook for housing. "If you look at the state of the overall economy and, in particular, the recent large decline in consumer confidence, these combined statistics continue to indicate the housing market is still bottoming and has not turned around.”

The July HPI released on Tuesday morning shows prices rose in 17 of the 20 cities tracked by S&P/Case-Shiller. The exceptions were Las Vegas, Phoenix and Detroit.

"This is a seasonal period of stronger demand for housing, so the monthly increases are expected and were seen in 17 of the 20 cities," Blitzer sad.

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