Monday, December 18, 2017

NAHB: Builder Confidence increased to 74 in December

by Bill McBride on 12/18/2017 10:05:00 AM

The National Association of Home Builders (NAHB) reported the housing market index (HMI) was at 74 in December, up from 69 in November. Any number above 50 indicates that more builders view sales conditions as good than poor.

From NAHB: Builders Confident as Market Primed to Expand in 2018

Builder confidence in the market for newly-built single-family homes increased five points to a level of 74 in December on the National Association of Home Builders/Wells Fargo Housing Market Index (HMI) after a downwardly revised November reading. This was the highest report since July 1999, over 18 years ago.

“Housing market conditions are improving partially because of new policies aimed at providing regulatory relief to the business community,” said NAHB Chairman Granger MacDonald, a home builder and developer from Kerrville, Texas.

The HMI measure of home buyer traffic rose eight points, showing that demand for housing is on the rise,” said NAHB Chief Economist Robert Dietz. “With low unemployment rates, favorable demographics and a tight supply of existing home inventory, we can expect continued upward movement of the single-family construction sector next year.”
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All three HMI components registered gains in December. The component measuring buyer traffic jumped eight points to 58, the index gauging current sales conditions rose four points to 81 and the index charting sales expectations in the next six months increased three points to 79.

Looking at the three-month moving averages for regional HMI scores, the Midwest climbed six points to 69, the South rose three points to 72, the West increased two points to 79 and Northeast inched up a single point to 54.
emphasis added
NAHB HMI Click on graph for larger image.

This graph show the NAHB index since Jan 1985.

This was above the consensus forecast, and a strong reading.