WASHINGTON -- Sales of the nation's existing single-family homes fell 0.3% in July from June to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 3.95 million, the National Association of Realtors said.

This was the third consecutive monthly drop.

Existing-home sales fell an unrevised 3.6% in June to an adjusted rate of 3.96 million.

The July resale rate was up 2.6% from a year before.

Robert Elrod, president of the National Association of Realtors, said that despite the recent declines, existing-home sales in 1994 will be the second highest on record.

Resales fell 4.8% in the Northeast, to an adjusted rate of 600,000; rose 1% in the Midwest, to 1.05 million; fell 0.7% in the South, to 1.45 million; and rose 2.4% in the West to 850,000.

-- Dow Jones

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