The tightening in lending standards on residential mortgages has had a "noticeable" impact on home sales and construction activity in August, according to the Federal Reserve Board's Beige Book.Several Federal Reserve district banks "noted that the reduction in credit availability added to uncertainty about when the housing market might turn around," the Beige Book says. The Boston Federal Reserve Bank reported increases in sales and house prices in Massachusetts. But most district banks reported declining home sales and declining or stable prices along with "high" inventories of unsold homes. Commercial real estate activity was "generally stable or expanding," the Beige Book says. However, several Federal Reserve Banks reported tighter credit conditions on CRE loans.

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