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Scheduled Foreclosure Auctions Soar in California

Banks in November scheduled more than 26,000 homes to be sold at California foreclosure auctions, a 63% increase from October and a sign that a surge in discounted, bank-owned properties is on track to hit the market next year.

The uptick in scheduled auctions follows an increase last summer in homes entering the foreclosure process by receiving default notices and was largely driven by Bank of America. It appears that many of those homes are now quickly working their way through the process, said Daren Blomquist, a spokesman for RealtyTrac of Irvine, a data tracker that published the November data.

Celia Chen, a housing economist with Moody's Analytics, said she expected the number of foreclosures on banks' books to rise next year and for the number of discounted foreclosures on the market to remain elevated. That will continue to put pressure on home prices.

California cities accounted for nine of the 10 metro areas with the highest foreclosure rates. Las Vegas was the only city outside of California in the top 10, coming in at No. 6. Bakersfield posted the nation's highest foreclosure rate for the second month in a row, followed by Modesto and Fresno.

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