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Freddie Mac

US home sales were flat in August

U.S. sales of existing homes were unchanged in August, as a shortage of houses priced at less than $250,000 — a level considered to be affordable for the middle class — has become a drag on the real estate market.

The National Association of Realtors said Thursday that homes sold last month at a seasonally adjusted annual pace of 5.34 million. Existing home sales have fallen 1.5 percent during the past 12 months.

Price gains are moderating, and the total number of sales listings is increasing, a marked change from roughly three years' worth of annual declines in inventory. But the sales momentum is increasingly concentrated on homes worth more than $500,000, while sales of...

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