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Home Sales, Prices Tumbled Further In October

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AP

U.S. existing home sales fell 1.2 percent in October to a record low 4.97 million-unit pace, according to a report Wednesday that showed the downturn in the U.S. housing market was deepening.

Home prices fell at a record pace and the inventory of homes for sales increased as the housing market felt the pinch of tighter lending standards.

The median existing home price fell 5.1 percent from a year ago to $207,800 and the total housing inventory rose 1.9 percent in October to 4.45 million existing homes for sale, a
10.8 month supply at the current sales pace.

The sales pace was the lowest since the realty trade group began tracking both single-family and condo sales jointly in 1999.

Economists polled by Reuters were expecting home resales to fall to a 5.00 million-unit pace from the 5.04 million-unit rate initially reported for September. The September sales pace
was revised to a 5.03 million unit rate.

Lawrence Yun, the NAR chief economist, blamed the poor home selling market on a continuing credit crunch and failing subprime loans that were offered to borrowers despite their
shaky credit.

"The subprime market has essentially disappeared," he said.


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