Prices creep up in most Census divisions

Index shows third month of home-price gains

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An index tracking sales of homes purchased with loans owned or guaranteed by Fannie Mae or Freddie Mac showed home prices rising for the third consecutive month from June to July, by a seasonally adjusted 0.3 percent, the Federal Housing Finance Agency said.

The FHFA’s monthly index — which can understate price swings in either direction because it excludes loans too big or too risky for Fannie and Freddie — showed U.S. home prices down 4.2 percent from a year ago and 10.5 percent from an April 2007 peak.