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Higher rates push California pending home sales lower

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Rising mortgage rates put a dent in pending home sales in August, while distressed home sales fell to levels not seen in almost six years, the California Association of Realtors said in a press release.

California pending home sales fell in August with the Pending Home Sales Index falling 5% to 108.3, down from 114 in July.

The combined share of all distressed property sales continued to decline in August, dipping 15.3%, down from 17.1% in July and 38% in August 2012.

"Rising interest rates over the past several months at the specter of a tapering of the Fed’s stimulus program sent buyers to the sidelines in August,” said C.A.R. Vice President and Chief Economist Leslie Appleton-Young. “However, the Fed’s decision last week to postpone the pullback should lead to lower interest rates, which bodes well for prospective buyers."

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