U.S. home prices hit their lowest level since the beginning of the recession, according to the latest Standard & Poor's/Case-Shiller National Home Price Index released today. Home prices nationwide fell 5.1 percent in the first quarter compared to first-quarter 2010, back to where they were in mid-2002. The index fell 4.2 percent compared to fourth-quarter 2010. Twelve of the 20 metro areas tracked by the index hit new lows in March: Atlanta; Charlotte, N.C.; Chicago; Cleveland; Detroit; Las Vegas; Miami; Minneapolis; New York; Phoenix; Portland, Ore.; and Tampa, Fla. All but Washington, D.C., saw their prices fall year-over-year. Home prices in the nation's capital rose 4.3 percent on an annual basis. The 20-city composite index fell to 138.16, a 3.6 percent annual decline and dow...
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