9:06 AM » Google's new data play: Predicting home sales
When Google Capital, an equity fund backed by the Internet search behemoth, announced last spring that it would sink $50 million into Auction.com, housing watchers were left scratching their heads. What would Google want with an online real estate auction company? The answer is now clear: Data. And it goes both ways. Auction.com is launching a new monthly report, the 'Nowcast,' that it claims can predict home sales up to a month faster than the National Association of Realtors. Realtors help sell the vast majority of the nation's homes, while Auction.com does just a small fraction.