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News Summary: US home sales surge to 3-year high

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The Associated Press | December 20, 2012 01:32 PM EST | AP


SALES RISE: U.S. sales of previously occupied homes jumped to their highest level in three years last month, bolstered by steady job gains and record-low mortgage rates. The National Association of Realtors said sales rose 5.9 percent to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 5.04 million in November.

BEST IN FIVE YEARS: Previously occupied home sales are on track for their best year in five years. November's sales were the highest since November 2009.

MORE GROWTH: The number of homes available for sale fell to nearly an 11-year low in November. That's pushing up prices and will likely encourage more home building next year, which should boost growth.