How did 2011 go so wrong, asks Derek Thompson of The Atlantic. Among the many factors keeping the economy down, he writes, is the housing bust. He references this chart showing the decline in housing prices since their peak in 2006. 

Nationally, home prices are down over 40% on average, with the Northeast and South weathering the bust far better than the rest of the country.

Despite government intervention and tax credits, this disturbing trend doesn’t appear to be ending anytime soon. Thompson argues that the current crisis may be too complex for Washington to solve.

Home Price Changes — 2006–March 2011Home Price Changes — 2006–March 2011

Photo: Clear Capital via National Journal

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