U.S. NAHB Oct Housing Index 68 Vs 64 In Sept.

By Eric Morath Features Dow Jones Newswires

Confidence among home builders rebounded in October after slipping in September to match the lowest level of the year.

Continue Reading Below

The National Association of Home Builders on Tuesday said its index that measures confidence in the market for new single-family homes rose to 68 in October from an unrevised 64 in September. The October reading was just above the August level of 67, but still slightly below the post-recession peak touched in March.

"This month's report shows that home builders are rebounding from the initial shock of the hurricanes," said Home Builders Chairman Granger MacDonald, a home builder and developer from Kerrville, Texas. "However, builders need to be mindful of long-term repercussions from the storms, such as intensified material price increases and labor shortages."

Home builders' confidence level had risen earlier this year to the highest levels since the housing bubble more than a decade ago. But sales of newly built homes have eased since touching a post-recession peak in March. And even that level was less than half of the sales pace reached in 2005.

Sales of existing homes, which account for the bulk of houses sold in the U.S., have also eased since spring, according to the National Association of Realtors. That group said a limited number of properties on the market and rising prices is causing the sales pace to slow.

"With a tight inventory of existing homes and promising growth in household formation, we can expect the new home market to continue to strengthen at a modest rate in the months ahead," said Home Builders Chief Economist Robert Dietz said.

Continue Reading Below

Write to Eric Morath at eric.morath@wsj.com

(END) Dow Jones Newswires

October 17, 2017 10:15 ET (14:15 GMT)