Real estate broker and agent confidence fell to a new low in July, according to a survey by real estate marketing and technology provider Point2 Technologies.

Point2’s Real Estate Confidence Index (RECI) fell 8.85 percent last month to 5.24, from 5.76 in June. The index is based on survey responses on a 10-point scale; one equals "bad" or "pessimistic," and 10 equals "good" or "optimistic."

The index’s three components gauge survey respondents’ current sentiment, future sentiment based on a short-term outlook (three to six months) and a long-term outlook (12 to 18 months).

All three components fell in July. After four months above the 5 index median, current sentiment crossed into pessimistic territory to 4.67, from 5.12 in June. Short-term sentiment fell to 5.07, from 5.64 in June. Long-term sentiment fell to 6 from 6.51 the month before.

Key reasons for increased pessimism among real estate agents and brokers included "unabated pricing pressure caused by foreclosure and pre-foreclosure properties; a general sense that shadow foreclosure inventory is significant and could materially prolong current market conditions; a persistent, tough job market keeping more potential buyers on the sidelines; and the expired federal tax credit program that many respondents felt was a key catalyst to market activity but that also accelerated buying in the first half of the year possibly at the expense of the remainder of 2010," the company said.

"A firm lending environment was another critical and ongoing contributing issue cited by RECI respondents in most states."

Confidence varied by location; to see a state-by-state heat map, click here.

Nationwide, 1,255 real estate professionals that use the company’s Point2 Agent software platform participated in the four-question survey.

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