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Nov. new-home sales won’t rescue 2011

A 1.6% increase in sales in November -- the third straight monthly rise -- won't be enough to prevent the worst year on record.

New-home sales rose 1.6 percent in November from October, but three consecutive months of increase is unlikely to rescue the market from its worst year on record.

The Census Bureau reported that the number of new homes for sale fell to a record low of 158,000, and the number of completed homes for sale fell to 59,000, which was the lowest level since September 1971.

- Alan J. Heavens