Positive Signs in Housing Push Markets Higher

This morning the National Association of Realtors said pending home sales rose 1.5% in March. The report further said that contract activity has been slowing. But the lower contract numbers have nothing to do with a lack of demand; they owe to the fact that the number of homes for sale has shrunk. Further, this is likely is sign that home prices are about to really take off: Demand is high, but supply seems to be low.

With the prospect of increasing home values, investors are pushing the markets higher. As of 12:55 p.m. the Dow Jones Industrial Average is up 103 points, or 0.7%, to break through the 14,800 mark. The S&P 500 has climbed 0.77%, while the NASDAQ is up 1.04%.

But even on days when the markets are moving higher, we can still find a few stocks getting left behind.

Shares of Boeing are currently flat despite the news that a Dreamliner took flight for the first time since the aircraft was grounded, flying from Ethiopia to Kenya. Furthermore, the company's annual shareholder meeting is taking place in Chicago today. While no negative news has emerged yet, shareholders may not be hearing what they want.

Shares of Verizon are down 0.6%. Some analysts are now reporting that Vodafone may prefer a merger with Verizon over a buyout. A U.K. fund manager went so far as to say that Vodafone is sitting on a few ugly assets if you take Verizon Wireless away from it, and he believes the shareholders would be better served in the long run if the two organizations merged. However, what is best for Vodafone is not likely what's best for Verizon.

General Electric is having an off day, down 0.2% even though the company is having a ribbon-cutting ceremony at the site of its newest plant, located in Alabama. The stock has been a rollercoaster in 2013, rising or falling when we expect the opposite. Shares increased 2.1% last week after tanking more than 7% in the previous week. The stock has risen merely 5.5% year to date, while the Dow is up nearly 13%. The company has a lot going for it, and shareholders would be wise to sit tight until the ride is over.

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The article Positive Signs in Housing Push Markets Higher originally appeared on Fool.com.

Fool contributor Matt Thalman has no position in any stocks mentioned. The Motley Fool owns shares of General Electric Company. Check back Monday through Friday as Matt explains what caused the Dow's winners and losers of the day, and every Saturday for a weekly recap. Follow Matt on Twitter: @mthalman5513. Try any of our Foolish newsletter services free for 30 days. We Fools may not all hold the same opinions, but we all believe that considering a diverse range of insights makes us better investors. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.

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