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Existing Home Sales Rise Again; 'Seller's Market Is Developing,' Realtors Say

Sales of existing homes rose 0.4 percent in January from December and were up 9.1 percent from January 2012, the National Association of Realtors reports.

The trade group also says "a seller's market is developing and home prices continue to rise."

Bloomberg News writes that the news signals the housing sector is "showing more momentum" after enjoying "its best year since 2007."

The NAR's chief economist, Lawrence Yun, says in the group's report that:

"Buyer traffic is continuing to pick up, while seller traffic is holding steady. In fact, buyer traffic is 40 percent above a year ago, so there is plenty of demand but insufficient inventory to improve sales more strongly. We've transitioned into a seller's market in much of the country."

Still, Bloomberg also has some cautionary news to pass along:

"Americans remain pessimistic about the economic outlook in February as rising gasoline prices compound the damage done by a higher payroll tax. The gap between positive and negative expectations was minus 7 this month, unchanged from January's three-month low, according to the Bloomberg Comfort Index."

Earlier Thursday, there was word that inflation remained in check last month — but that jobless claims rose last week.

Also, the Conference Board said its leading economic index rose 0.2 percent in January. That's a sign the economy should keep growing in coming months.

Copyright 2013 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

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Professional Wrestling World Mourns Longtime Star 'Rowdy' Roddy Piper

The Canadian entered the WWF as a villain and fought Hulk Hogan and Mr. T in the first Wrestlemania event. The career gave the often-bekilted grappler many chances to show off his bagpipe skills.
WAMU 88.5

Donald Trump Sues Chef José Andrés Over Hotel Pullout

Trump has filed a $10 million breach-of-contract lawsuit against Chef José Andrés and his companies after Andrés announced that he's canceling plans to have a restaurant inside Trump's Old Post Office hotel in downtown D.C.
NPR

Pacific Trade Pact In Limbo As Talks End Without A Deal

Disagreements remain among the 12 countries regarding drug patents, market access and more, and likely will delay congressional debate of any eventual agreement into 2016.
NPR

Despite Host Controversy, Amazon Takes A Chance On 'Top Gear'

The trio that made Top Gear the world's biggest car show will return to the small screen in a new show for Amazon Prime. The BBC canned one of its hosts last year after a fight with a producer.

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