Will stocks rally again?..Housing news

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Associated Press

Posted on March 18, 2013 at 6:02 AM

NEW YORK (AP) — Investors are hoping the Dow Jones industrial average takes off again this week after ending its longest winning streak in nearly 17 years on Friday. The blue-chip index dropped 25 points to close at 14,514. And it wasn't the only index that lost ground on Wall Street. The broader S&P 500 fell 2 1/2 points. And the Nasdaq composite was down nearly 10 points. Futures suggest Wall Street is heading for a retreat this morning.

LONDON (AP) — International stock markets fell sharply today as investors gave an initial thumbs down to a weekend plan to tax depositors in Cypriot banks as part of a bailout of the Mediterranean island nation. People in Cyprus have reacted with fury to the news. The euro is also taking a pounding against the dollar. Benchmark crude oil is down below $93 per barell.

UNDATED (AP) — There's only one major economic report today. But if it's promising, it could be a boost for stocks. The National Association of Home Builders will release its housing market index for March.

WASHINGTON (AP) — The White House says President Barack Obama is set today to nominate Thomas Perez, an assistant attorney general, to be the next secretary of labor. If confirmed by the Senate, Perez, who has been head of the Justice Department's Civil Rights Division for 3½ years, would take over the Labor Department as Obama undertakes several worker-oriented initiatives, including an overhaul of immigration laws and an increase in the minimum wage.

NICOSIA, Cyprus (AP) — Cyprus' president says he is trying to amend a key provision of an unpopular eurozone bailout plan that would tax deposits in the country's banks to reduce its effect on small savers. But in a nationally televised speech, the president also urged lawmakers to approve the tax in a vote today, saying it is essential to save the country from bankruptcy. Cyprus residents are furious about the tax.

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