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Foreclosures in metro St. Louis are down 40 percent in the past year, according to new figures from RealtyTrac.

Last month, there were 1,200 homes in metro St. Louis either taken by the banks or in the foreclosure process, compared to 2,000 a year earlier. The current number equals one out of every 1,000 homes here.

The long improving trend seems to have leveled out lately. The foreclosure count actually rose 1 between July and August of this year, the online foreclosure market reported today.

Nationally, foreclosures are down 34 percent from last year, and 2 percent from July to August.

In the St. Louis area, Washington County had the lowest foreclosure rate, with one in 11,000 homes threatened or taken.  Madison County had the highest at one in 615.   The rate was one in 1,158 in St. Louis County and one in 937 in St. Louis city and one in 901 in St. Charles County, one in 918 in Jefferson County and one in 982 in St. Clair County.

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