Home-prices leveling off after gains earlier this year

A measure of U.S. home prices rose only slightly in September from August, a sign that prices are leveling off after big gains earlier this year.

Real estate provider CoreLogic said Tuesday that home prices increased 0.2 percent in September from the previous month. That’s sharply lower than the 0.9 percent month-over-month gain in August and the 1.8 percent increase in July.

Prices still rose 12 percent in September compared with a year ago. Higher mortgage rates and prices slowed home sales in September. As a result, price gains have cooled off.

Mortgage rates are still very low. And the average rate on a 30-year fixed loan has fallen to 4.1 percent in the past month, down from a two-year high of nearly 4.6 percent last summer.

Target offers store credit for used iPad trade-ins

Target Corp. is offering at least $200 in store credit to customers who trade in any undamaged iPad, no matter how old, an attention-getting promotion that coincides with Apple Inc.’s release of a new full-sized iPad and an iPad price cut by rival Walmart Stores Inc.

The offer was disclosed on the Minneapolis-based retailer’s website and in advertising circulars this week.

At Target stores that sell mobile devices, employees will appraise the value of individual iPads and issue a “$200 minimum promotional credit” on a Target gift card that can be redeemed at any Target store. “To be eligible for trade in, the iPad must power on and the screen must not be scratched,” Target said on its website.

The offer extends to the first-generation iPad, which went on sale in 2010.

Both Target and Apple were forced to match Walmart’s decision to sell the entry-level iPad at $479 on Friday, the day it was released. Apple had set the list price at $499. 

Meredith Corp. launches Allrecipes magazine

Meredith Corp., publisher of Better Homes and Gardens and Parents magazines, has launched Allrecipes magazine.

The new title went on sale nationwide Tuesday and is an extension of the Allrecipes.com website Meredith acquired from The Reader’s Digest Association Inc. for $175 million in 2012.

Price of oil drops 1 percent, extending one-month slide

The price of oil dropped another 1 percent Tuesday to below $94 per barrel, extending a one-month slide due to expectations of rising supplies.

Benchmark U.S. crude for December delivery fell $1.25, or 1.3 percent, to $93.37 per barrel in midday trading in New York. Brent crude, which is used to price international oil used by many U.S. refiners, fell 90 cents to close at $105.33.

— From news service reports

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