Fewer US homes repossessed by lenders in October

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Fewer homes are completing the foreclosure process and ending up repossessed by banks because of a growing appetitie among investors for buying properties at auction — before they end up on the market.

Some 37,775 homes nationwide completed the foreclosure process in October, down 1 percent from the previous month and 29 percent from a year earlier, RealtyTrac Inc. reported Thursday.

At the front end of the process, lenders initiated foreclosure action against 58,939 homes last month, an increase of 2 percent from September but a drop of 34 percent from October 2012.

Foreclosure starts have been down nationally on an annual basis for 15 months in a row, while home repossessions have fallen annually for 11 consecutive months.

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