U.S. foreclosure filings hit a record in the first half, a sign that job losses and falling property prices deepened the housing recession, RealtyTrac Inc. said Thursday.

More than 1.5 million properties received a default or auction notice or were seized by banks in the six months through June, the Irvine, Calif., seller of default data said. That's a 15% increase from a year earlier.

One in 84 U.S. households received a filing.

Twenty of the 50 U.S. counties with the highest foreclosure rates were in California and 12 were in Florida, RealtyTrac said.

Clark County, Nev., home to Las Vegas, had the highest rate in the nation with one in 13 households receiving a filing, according to RealtyTrac.

Lee County, Fla., home to Fort Myers and Cape Coral, ranked second at one in 14.

Three counties tied for third place at one in 15 households: Merced, Calif., Osceola, Fla., and Lyon, Nev.

Riverside, Calif., ranked sixth; Nye, Nev., was seventh; and San Joaquin, San Bernardino and Stanislaus, all in California, ranked eighth through 10th, RealtyTrac said.

Foreclosure filings in the second quarter totaled a record 889,829, up 11% from the first quarter and up 20% from a year earlier, RealtyTrac said. June filings were 336,173, the third highest monthly total in records going back to January 2005.

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