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Risk wanes for real estate price declines

PMI sees improvements in nearly all markets

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See related article:Top 10 most risky, least risky real estate markets The risk of home-price declines decreased in 93 percent of the 384 markets tracked at the end of last year by analysts with PMI Mortgage Insurance Co., although half still showed an elevated or high risk of depreciation.Overall risk of price declines "decreased dramatically" during the final three months of 2009, PMI said, largely because of improvements in affordability and declining foreclosure starts. Affordability was helped by falling home prices, lower mortgage rates, and increasing personal income."House prices have dropped sharply relative to incomes in most areas suggesting that prices have fully, or more than fully, adjusted for their unsustainable increases during the housing boom," PMI Chief Economist David Berson said in a statement accompanying the report.PMI expects risk scores to continue falling, as unemployment rates should show improvement in the first quarter of ...