Sales of previously owned U.S homes slumped last month to the lowest level in six months, reports Bloomberg, "a sign that the housing market is lagging other parts of the economy." Month over month, sales dropped 3.8 percent to an annual rate of 4.81 million units, according to the National Association of Realtors. That's the lowest since November. Reuters notes that some of that slump is due to "bad weather in some parts of the country, including tornadoes" but regardless, the numbers "underscored the fundamental weakness in the sector." On an even gloomier note, Bloomberg reports that with "an unemployment rate hovering around 9 percent and tight credit standards... it may take years to absorb the 1.8 million distressed properties on the market that are weighing down home values." On the upside, The Wall Street Journal notes that the weak home sales haven't hurt the markets much. "U.S. stocks rose as investors overlooked weak U.S. housing data and bet Greek Prime Minister George Papandreou will win a confidence vote later Tuesday, a major step toward averting a sovereign debt default."
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