LOS ANGELES (AP) - New data show that lenders initiated foreclosure action in August against the fewest U.S. homes for any month in nearly eight years.
Foreclosure listing firm RealtyTrac Inc. said Thursday that nearly 56,000 homes entered the foreclosure process last month.
That's down 8 percent from July and down 44 percent from August last year.
The risk of foreclosure remains elevated in several states, including Florida, Nevada and Ohio.
But the national slowdown in homes entering foreclosure should help reduce the number of homes taken back by banks in months ahead.
While fewer homes are entering the foreclosure process, lenders have stepped up home repossessions in recent months.
Completed foreclosures rose 6 percent last month versus July, the third monthly increase in four months.
They declined 25 percent from August last year.