After rising four points in November, builder confidence in the market for new homes in December fell one point on the National Association of Home Builders (NAHB)/Wells Fargo Housing Market Index (HMI).
Specifically, builder confidence fell from an index score of 58 in November to a score of 57 this month. A score above 50 means builders are confident – anything below 50 means they are not.
‘Members in many markets across the country have seen their businesses improve over the course of the year, and we expect builders to remain confident in 2015,’ says Kevin Kelly, chairman of NAHB, in a statement.
David Crowe, chief economist for NAHB, says that despite a sluggish start to the year, the HMI has basically ‘stabilized’ during the past six months.
‘As we head into 2015, the housing market should continue to recover at a steady, gradual pace,’ Crowe predicts.
Two of the three HMI components posted slight losses in December. The index gauging current sales conditions fell one point to 61, while the index measuring expectations for future sales dropped a single point to 65. The index gauging traffic of prospective buyers held steady at 45.
Looking at the three-month moving averages for regional HMI scores, the West rose by four points to 62 and the Northeast rose one point to 45, while the Midwest registered a three-point loss to 54 and the South dropped two points to 60.