Home sales jump in August as investors swoop in

WASHINGTON – The number of Americans who bought previously occupied homes rose in August. But sales were driven by an increase in foreclosures, a sign that home prices could fall further and slow a housing recovery.

The National Association of Realtors said Wednesday that home sales rose 7.7% last month to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 5.03 million homes. That’s below the 6 million economists say is consistent with a healthy housing market.

Last month’s pace was slightly ahead of the 4.91 million sold in 2010, worst sales level in 13 years

Homes at risk of foreclosure made up 31% of sales. That’s up from 29% in July. Many are being bought by investors.

At the same time, activity among first-time buyers, who are critical to reviving the housing market, didn’t budge. First-time buyers made up only 32% of sales, matching July’s level. They normally make up half of home sales….Read More



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