(Source: CNN)

March and first-quarter total filings were the highest monthly and quarterly totals on record.

Repossessions fall 3%.

NEW YORK (CNNMoney.com) — Foreclosure activity skyrocketed in March and the first quarter of 2009 to their highest levels on record as banks lifted moratoria on filings.

Total foreclosure filings – which include default papers, auction sale notices and repossessions – reached 803,489 in the first quarter, according to a report released Thursday by RealtyTrac, on online marketer of foreclosed properties. That is a 24% jump over a year earlier and a 9% increase compared to the previous quarter.

Of those filings, 341,180 happened in March – a 17% increase from February and a 46% jump from March 2008.

The March and first quarter numbers were the highest monthly and quarterly totals since RealtyTrac began reporting in January 2005.

“In the month of March we saw a record level of foreclosure activity – the number of households that received a foreclosure filing was more than 12% higher than the next highest month on record,” said James J. Saccacio, chief executive officer of RealtyTrac, in a statement.

Read the full article “Foreclosure filings jump 24%” at CNN (April 16 2009)

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