With the economy growing more slowly next year, and interest rates staying low, Fannie Mae is predicting that home sales and mortgage originations will slip but still remain strong.

The secondary-market agency says it expects existing home sales to drop from this year's estimated record of 4.1 million to 3.9 million homes in 1997, and mortgage originations to fall from an estimated $785 billion this year to $710 billion next year.

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