Builder confidence surges in June
For the first time since April 2006, builder confidence surged past 50 on the National Association of Home Builders/Wells Fargo Housing Market Index released Tuesday. This benchmark indicates that builder sentiment is mostly positive regarding market conditions.
The eight-point jump to 52 in June also marked the biggest one-month gain since August and September 2002.
Any reading over 50 indicates that more builders view sales conditions as good than poor.
"Builders are experiencing some relief in the headwinds that are holding back a more robust recovery," said NAHB chief economist David Crowe.
June's HMI numbers are on track with the forecast for a 29% increase in total housing starts for 2013, according to Crowe.
All three HMI components posted gains in June. The index gauging current sales conditions increased eight points to 56, while the index measuring expectations for future sales rose nine points to 61 -- its highest level since March 2006. The index gauging traffic of prospective buyers rose seven points to 40.
The HMI three-month moving average was up in three of the four regions, with the Northeast and Midwest posting a one-point and three-point gain to 37 and 47, respectively. The South registered a four-point gain to 46, while the West fell one point to 48.