The SPDR S&P Homebuilders (XHB) exchange traded fund (ETF) declined sharply on the news that sales of existing homes dropped in 41 states during April and June. It ended the day down 4.1%.

In addition, home prices were down in one-third of metropolitan areas surveyed, according to Martin Crutsinger for the Associated Press. These figures represent the worst housing market conditions in 16 years. States that suffered the biggest losses since last year include Florida, down 41.3%; Nevada, down 37.5%; Arizona, down 23.4%; Tennessee, down 21.5%; Maryland, down 21.1%; and California, down 19.8%.

However, there was some good news for the real estate industry in the recent survey: Home prices were up in 97 of the 149 metropolitan areas surveyed compared with the sales prices last year.

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The opinions and forecasts expressed herein are solely those of Tom Lydon, and may not actually come to pass. Information on this site should not be used or construed as an offer to sell, a solicitation of an offer to buy, or a recommendation for any product.