After losing over a third of their value a decade ago, which led to the financial crisis and a deep recession, U.S. house prices have regained those losses – led by a robust labor market that has fueled a pickup in economic activity and housing demand. But supply has not been able to keep up with rising demand, making homeownership less affordable. Annual average earnings growth has remained below 3 percent even as house price rises have averaged more than 5 percent over the last few years. The latest poll of nearly 45 analysts taken May 16-June 5 showed the S&P/Case Shiller composite index of home prices in 20 cities is expected to gain a further 5.7 percent this year. That compared to predictions for average earnings growth of 2.8 percent and inflation of 2.5 percent 2018, according to a separate Reuters poll of economists.