Sales of new single-family home sales rose 7.3% in April from the month prior to notch their second straight month of gains — and prices increased — but compared to a year ago the business was still in a depression, registering a 23% slide.

The Commerce Department reported that new homes sold at an annualized rate of 323,000 units, the highest level since December. In March the annualized rate was 301,000-units. (Some past readings were revised upwards.)

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