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Zillow: US home values to drop about $681B in 2011

Annual loss is 35% less than in 2010

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The value of overall homes nationwide has likely dropped just over $681 billion this year, according to property search and valuation site Zillow. That drop, to a total estimated value of $21.9 trillion for U.S. homes, is 35 percent less than the drop experienced last year, when the nation's homes lost $1.1 trillion in value. Most of the decrease in 2011 occurred during the first half of the year, when the market lost $454 billion in value, Zillow said. The site projects values dropped a further $227 billion in the second half of 2011. "While homeowners suffered through another year of steep losses, the good news is that homes are losing value at a substantially slower pace as the market works its way towards the bottom," said Stan Humphries, Zillow's chief economist, in a statement. "Unfortunately, when we look ahead to next year, the unabsorbed pool of housing supply, dragging levels of consumer confidence, high unemployment and negative equity will continue to put d...