LOS ANGELES -- New data show that fewer U.S. homes entered the foreclosure process or were repossessed by banks in June.
Foreclosure listing firm RealtyTrac Inc. said Thursday that banks initiated the foreclosure process on about 57,200 U.S. homes last month.
That's the lowest level for any month in 7 1/2 years and down sharply from May and June last year.
Completed foreclosures also posted steep monthly and annual declines in June, at 35,500 homes.
The trend the latest sign that the nation is shaking off its housing bust hangover.
The U.S. housing recovery continues to gain strength, propelled by steady job gains, low interest rates and rising home values.
Even so, foreclosures remain a potential drag on housing in many states, including Florida, Nevada, Illinois, Ohio and Georgia.