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Researcher Says Southern California Home Prices Fall 31 Percent in July, While Sales Climb

A research firm says Southern California home sales surged to a 16-month high in July as prices fell and bargain-hunters snapped up foreclosed properties.

MDA DataQuick says a total of 20,329 homes and condos -- including new and existing models -- were sold during July in the six-county region, up 13.8 percent from July 2007 and up 16.7 percent from June.

The firm says it was the highest monthly tally since March 2007, and the first annual increase since September 2005.

Foreclosures accounted for 43.6 percent of all resold properties in Southern California last month, up from 7.9 percent in July 2007 and a revised 41.8 percent in June.

MDA DataQuick says foreclosures were at record highs and continue to be the dominant factor driving sales.

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