U.S. Home Builder Confidence Slips

Confidence among U.S. home builders slipped this month but remained high historically, a sign of stability in the housing market.

The National Association of Home Builders said Thursday its housing market index fell to 67 this month from 69 in May. Economists surveyed by The Wall Street Journal had expected a reading of 70.

Despite the June decline, confidence has risen broadly over the past year, reflecting steady home sales and expectations that the market will pick up later this year. A measure of builders' sentiment for present sales conditions stood at 73 this month, down from 75 in May. A measure of sales expectations in the next six months fell to 76 from 78. A measure of traffic of prospective buyers slipped to 49 from 51.

Builders say several factors are holding back construction.

"As the housing market strengthens and more buyers enter the market, builders continue to express their frustration over an ongoing shortage of skilled labor and buildable lots that is impeding stronger growth in the single-family sector," Robert Dietz, the trade group's chief economist, said in a statement.

Write to Josh Mitchell at joshua.mitchell@wsj.com

(END) Dow Jones Newswires

June 15, 2017 10:14 ET (14:14 GMT)