Homebuilder confidence remains flat at depressed levels

Despite this decline, homebuilders finished the week flat after disappointing homebuilder confidence data. The overall trend remains weak as total starts rose just 1.98% over the past twelve months.

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Builder confidence in the market for newly-built single-family homes slipped two points in July to a level of 64 from a downwardly revised June reading on the National Association of home builders/wells fargo housing market Index (HMI). It is the lowest reading since November 2016.

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Lastly, May NAHB homebuilder confidence index also was a touch better. USD/JPY looks to extend the rebound from weekly lows in sub-108.00 levels recorded on Thursday. The greenback remains under.

"While demand for single-family homes remains sound, builders continue to report rising development and construction costs," said NAHB Chairman Greg Ugalde. In addition to grappling with rising costs, a shortage of skilled labor has also depressed confidence levels among the nation’s home builders.

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Housing remains regional. The health of the housing market is drastically different in different parts of the country. The NAHB sentiment figure fell two points in the Northeast and three points in the Midwest, to 16 and 12, respectively. The South posted a two-point improvement to 14 while the West held unchanged at 8.

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In U.S. economic news, the National Association of Home Builders released a report showing homebuilder confidence has held steady in the. The index is on pace to end the session at its best closing.

The Housing Market Index (HMI) is based on a monthly survey of NAHB members designed to take the pulse of the single-family housing market. The survey asks respondents to rate market conditions for the sale of new homes at the present time and in the next six months as well as the traffic of prospective buyers of new homes.