- Builder confidence in the single-family home market held steady at 60 from December to January, according to the National Association of Home Builders/Wells Fargo Housing Market Index. The index fell to 61 in December, from a November reading of 62, but was revised downward to 60 after the original index report was issued.
- Two out of three HMI components dropped from December to January — sales expectations for the next six months fell three points to 63; prospective buyer traffic dropped two points to 44 but current sales conditions rose two points to 67.
- Regional HMI three-month moving averages showed declines in all four regions, with the Northeast (49), Midwest (57) and West (75) posting one-point declines and the South (61) falling two points.
NAHB Chief Economist David Crowe said January's HMI is in line with the NAHB's longstanding forecast for modest growth in housing in the face of an encouraging economic outlook.
"After eight months hovering in the low 60s, builder sentiment is reflecting that many markets continue to show a gradual improvement, which should bode well for future home sales in the year ahead," said NAHB Chairman Tom Woods, also a homebuilder in Missouri.
The NAHB has conducted a housing index survey for 30 years in an attempt to gauge current single-family market conditions as well as project sales expectations six months out. The NAHB scores each component then calculates a seasonally adjusted index figure. An index number over 50, according to the NAHB, indicates that more builders view conditions as good than as poor.