Home builder sentiment climbed in October to its strongest level since June 2006 as more serious buyers expressed interest in buying new single-family homes.
The one-point gain in the National Assn. of Home Builders/Wells Fargo Housing Market Index doesn't seem like much. But the increase was the sixth straight monthly upswing for the measure, bringing it to a level of 41.
Still, any number less than 50 shows that more builders consider sales conditions to be poor.
Measures of sentiment toward current sales conditions and prospects over the next six months both stayed at less-than-optimistic levels. Confidence levels improved in three regions and stayed the same in the Northeast, but remain depressed.
A component in the National Assn. of Home Builders index showed that, according to builders' reports, prospective buyer traffic soared five points to 35 — that gauge's highest level since April 2006.