"California's housing market is being closely watched as a barometer of the economy -- it is the nation's largest. Prices soared during the boom, but the collapse of housing prices has pummeled homeowners and helped send foreclosures skyrocketing. Any sign of recovery would be taken as a sign that the market is bottoming.
It was the first back-to-back increase in the state's housing prices in two years, following an increase in the median price of homes in March from February. The median price of $256,700 for single-family homes in April is up from a median price of $253,040 in March, according to estimates by the California Association of Realtors.
The April prices were still off 36.5% from the same month a year ago, but the sales of 540,360 homes on a seasonally adjusted, annualized basis represented a 49.2% rise over the same time, the Realtors group reported Thursday."