Sales of existing single-family homes declined in August but continued strong, the National Association of Realtors said.

Sales declined 3.7% in August, down from a record July level. August sales totaled 4.73 million units, on a seasonally adjusted basis. This is 10.5% above the year-earlier rate of 4.28 million units.

The month-to-month decline reflects a "cautious correction" in the market, said R. Layne Morrill, the Realtors association president.

"The sharp changes in the financial markets a few weeks ago only served to underscore the stability of residential real estate as a safe, solid long-term investment choice for consumers," Mr. Morrill said.

The national median price for an existing home in August was $132,900, a 4.2% increase from a year earlier, the association said.

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