U.S. home prices reach highest level in 6 years


LOS ANGELES — A measure of U.S. home prices rose in 2012 by the most in six years, buoyed by stronger demand, a lower inventory of unsold homes, and fewer sales of bank-owned properties.

Real estate data provider CoreLogic says its home price index, based on repeat sales of the same properties, climbed 7.5 percent last year. That's the biggest annual increase since 2006.

CoreLogic forecasts that home prices will rise 6 percent nationally this year.