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WASHINGTON (MarketWatch) — Pending home sales jumped in May to reach a six-year high, the National Association of Realtors said Thursday. The NAR’s pending home sales index climbed 6.7% to 112.3 in May, from a downwardly revised 105.2 (from 106.0) in April. The index was up 12.1% from May 2012 levels. The NAR said the rise in mortgage rates has prompted some would-be buyers to move. “Even with limited choices, it appears some of the rise in contract signings could be from buyers wanting to take advantage of current affordability conditions before mortgage interest rates move higher,” said Lawrence Yun, chief economist of the NAR. A sale is listed as pending when the contract has been signed but the transaction has not closed, though the sale usually is finalized within one or two months of signing. The NAR upgraded its median price forecast for 2013 to nearly $195,000 from exceeding $190,000 and its existing home sales forecast to a seven-year high of 5.07 million from “about” 5 million.
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30-year-mortgage rate soars to almost 2-year high
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