Home prices rose 13.2% nationwide over the 12 months ended June 30, up from 10.0% in the comparable period a year earlier, according to Freddie Mac.In the second quarter alone prices rose 3.6%, for an annualized rate of 15.0%, Freddie Mac reported in releasing its quarterly Conventional Mortgage Home Price Index. "Home sales and housing starts are still expected to set a new record this year," said Frank Nothaft, Freddie Mac's chief economist. "The devastating effects of Hurricane Katrina will likely drive up costs of construction materials once the rebuilding effort gets under way and may slow deliveries of new homes in other areas of the country as resources are reallocated to Louisiana, Mississippi, and other areas affected by the storm." The index showed that, for the ninth quarter in a row, the Pacific states recorded the largest gains in home prices, which rose 21.1% for the 12-month period. The index was jointly developed by Freddie Mac and Fannie Mae. Freddie Mac can be found online at http://www.freddiemac.com.

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