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Massachusetts foreclosure activity continued to decline in August, more evidence of a local housing market recovery, the Warren Group reported Tuesday.

In August, 261 foreclosures were completed in the Bay State, a 54-percent drop from the same month a year ago, said the Warren Group, a Boston firm that tracks local real estate activity. August marked the 15th consecutive month of year-over-year foreclosure deed decreases, the firm added.

Foreclosure petitions, an early step in the process, also decreased. There were 436 petitions initiated in August, down 76 percent on a year-to-year comparison basis.

“The local housing market has made great strides so far this year,” Warren Group chief executive Timothy M. Warren Jr. said in a statement. “The decline in foreclosure activity coincides with significant increases in sales volume and home prices. Other factors include an improved economy, loan modifications, and other alternatives to foreclosure.”


Chris Reidy can be reached at reidy@globe.com.