FORECLOSURES STILL A DRAG: Rising foreclosures are weighing on the U.S. housing market, reducing prices and keeping new-home sales weak. Economists expect foreclosures to restrain home prices this year, even though sales will likely rise.

PRICES DECLINE: The Standard & Poor's/Case-Shiller home-price index showed that prices dropped in February from January in 16 of the 20 cities it tracks. That's the sixth straight month most cities have shown a decline.

WEAK SALES: New-home sales fell sharply in March, the government said. Sales dropped 7.1 percent to an annual rate of 328,000. Still, that came after sales were revised strongly upward in February.