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Pending home sales slip 1.3% in July

Pending home sales slip 1.3% in July (by Steve Goldstein)

WASHINGTON (MarketWatch) -- An index of pending home sales fell 1.3% in July, the National Association of Realtors reported Monday. The index is nonetheless 14.4% above July 2010 levels. A sale is listed as pending when the contract has been signed but the transaction has not closed, and high levels of cancellations meant gains in the pending-home-sales series in May and June didn't translate to the final sales as measured in the existing-home-sales series. Lawrence Yun, chief economist for the trade group, said contract activity over the past three months is fairly comparable to the first three months of the year, and well above the low seen in April.