The amount of money raised at auction in July was down on last year

The total raised from auctions in July was £718m, an 11.7% decrease from July 2006. The percentage of lots sold also dropped to 70% from 75%.

However, this represented an increase from the June sales total of 69%. Lots offered increased by 2.1%, rising to 4,436 from 4,346 in July 2006.

The auction market is seen as a bell-weather for the wider property industry, and July saw many of the fears surrounding soaring interest rates and falling prices in the secondary market played out in auction rooms around the country.