WASHINGTON--Sales of U.S. existing homes increased 5.5% in October, as homebuying bounced back after slipping in the aftermath of the Sept. 11 attacks, according to the National Association of Realtors (NAR).

The NAR said previously owned homes sold at a seasonally adjusted annualized pace of 5.17 million units in October, up from a revised rate of 4.9 million in September.

"This report is not surprising. We were expecting some bounce back," said NAR's Chief Economist David Lereah.