U.S. sees biggest home sales plunge in decades

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Sales of previously owned homes in the United States plunged 27 percent in July, reaching the lowest level since at least 1999.

The National Association of Realtors said Tuesday that was the largest monthly drop in the four decades that records have been kept.

Sales fell twice as much as forecast, dropping to 3.83 million on an annualized basis, the National Association of Realtors said. The median forecast of economists was 4.65 million, according to a Bloomberg news survey.

The decline means the housing market hasn’t been able to build on the temporary boost generated by a buyers’ tax credit of up to $8,000. Mortgage rates at record lows have provided scant relief to the industry as unemployment hovers close to 10 percent, foreclosures hold near record highs and the economy cools.

Full Story: Biggest U.S. home sales plunge in decades