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Homebuilder Confidence Rises To 5 Year High As Actual Sales Remain Near All Time Lows

Tyler Durden's picture


America may not sell many new homes (read - sales are near or at all time lows), but that does not prevent homebuilders from having a dream, or in this case confidence that soon, soon, SOON, things will finally improve. Sure enough, in May the NAHB homebuilder confidence soared to 29, from 24, on expectations of a 26 print. Of course, these numbers are completely meaningless, and only serve to get the algos ramping momentum in an upward direction. In the meantime, the reality of actual sales, can be seen on the chart below.

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Tue, 05/15/2012 - 10:09 | 2426751 bnbdnb
bnbdnb's picture

Renters FTW

Tue, 05/15/2012 - 10:26 | 2426856 NotApplicable
NotApplicable's picture

Student housing and bigger hospitals are all I see going up here.

Tue, 05/15/2012 - 11:23 | 2427135 redpill
redpill's picture

"In the meantime, the reality of actual sales, can be seen on the chart below."

I don't disagree with the thesis, but those are NOT actual sales.  They are the results of an X12-ARIMA seasonally adjusted annualized monthly rate based upon an extremely thin survey of 1 in 50 permits in 900 of the 19,000 permit issuing placed across the country.  It has very little to do with actual sales. 

What are the real sales?  About 26,000 new home transactions closed in March.  And no, that isn't very good since March typically is supposed to be one of the strongest months of the year in activity.  But it is above the March 2011 level of about 21,000.

Tue, 05/15/2012 - 12:58 | 2427819 Iam_Silverman
Iam_Silverman's picture

" but those are NOT actual sales"

Thanks for the clarification on that.  It is good to see informed posters back here at ZH.  Now, not that I doubt you, but could you post the source of your information above?  I'd bet that there is a lot more in there that I (as well as others) should be reading!

Tue, 05/15/2012 - 10:35 | 2426900 jus_lite_reading
jus_lite_reading's picture

Homebuilders are confident that they will make a killing selling company stock!!


Insiders selling stock like there is no tomorrow and yet stock RISES!!! LMAO!!


Tue, 05/15/2012 - 10:48 | 2426968 SheepDog-One
SheepDog-One's picture

Fed buying it all!

Tue, 05/15/2012 - 10:58 | 2427033 Arnold Ziffel
Arnold Ziffel's picture

mmm...wondering if the builders are depending on those wealthy foreigners to buy the boxes?


"Filings show 45% of China companies see slowdown"



Tue, 05/15/2012 - 11:23 | 2427144 redpill
redpill's picture

The Miami market has actually seen quite a bit of improvement over the last year largely due to investment purchases of homes by South Americans, mostly from Brazil.

Tue, 05/15/2012 - 11:38 | 2427234 IrritableBowels
IrritableBowels's picture

Hey great info, thanks!

Tue, 05/15/2012 - 11:14 | 2427097 smithcreek
smithcreek's picture

Makes sense to me.  Just like the unemployment figure, homebuilder confidence is only calculated by homebuilders that are still in business.

Tue, 05/15/2012 - 10:11 | 2426755 transaccountin
transaccountin's picture

only a matter of time before i can sell my hut for a cool 500k fiat dollars.

Tue, 05/15/2012 - 10:20 | 2426836 insanelysane
insanelysane's picture

too bad you bought it for 1,500k fiat dollars.

Tue, 05/15/2012 - 11:36 | 2427228 kekekekekekeke
kekekekekekeke's picture

 ...and bread will be 200 fiat dollars

Tue, 05/15/2012 - 10:11 | 2426757 surf0766
surf0766's picture

They are optimistic leaders. Clueless optimistic leaders. They know The Secret

Tue, 05/15/2012 - 10:12 | 2426776 Jason T
Jason T's picture


"..it's not a lie if you believe it."  

Tue, 05/15/2012 - 10:11 | 2426760 Badabing
Badabing's picture

five year high on crack

Tue, 05/15/2012 - 10:25 | 2426850 gjp
gjp's picture

Incredible.  Yet another day of reckoning with reality in Europe while US markets dance with fairies in la-la land.  Groupon, Face Book, and Amazon lead the way.  American ingenuity in on-line shopping and narcissism will save the world!

Tue, 05/15/2012 - 10:28 | 2426876 TheFourthStooge-ing
TheFourthStooge-ing's picture


five year high on crack

Over the years, I've had the misfortune of meeting a few crackheads and coke addicts. As a whole, they were lying, thieving, scheming, manipulative assholes who would pimp out their own mother for another fix. These are the characteristics they share with NAHB members and their counterparts in realty and mortgage lending.

However, having said that, I've never seen a crackhead with such a distorted, warped, and completely unreal perception of reality as that indicated by the NAHB optimism indicated above. I don't know what these people are messed up on, but it's something far more insidious and damaging than crack, and it's reached epidemic proportions on Wall Street and inside the I-495 beltway.

In contrast, here we are in freakin' 2012, and for some reason weed is still illegal.


Tue, 05/15/2012 - 11:49 | 2427304 Nobody For President
Nobody For President's picture

I've always found real-estators in a somewhat different world than the rest of us. I guess hopium is stronger than both weed AND brandy...

Tue, 05/15/2012 - 11:50 | 2427308 Nobody For President
Nobody For President's picture


Tue, 05/15/2012 - 10:10 | 2426761 realtick
realtick's picture

No group of businessmen is more delusional than real estate developers and builders.

Tue, 05/15/2012 - 10:21 | 2426834 jus_lite_reading
jus_lite_reading's picture

"The sun will come out, tomorrow! Tomorrow! Bet your bottom dollar that tomorrow, there'll be sun!"


FOR SALE signs have been haning on some homes for so long that they have literally fallen off...



Tue, 05/15/2012 - 10:49 | 2426985 SheepDog-One
SheepDog-One's picture

Realtick...no doubt...my folks and my brother and his wife are all real estate agents and their excited conversations over how its all swinging up and any moment there will be another housing boom are hillarious!

Tue, 05/15/2012 - 10:55 | 2426996 redpill
redpill's picture

Five years ago maybe, not so much now.  Homebuilders didn't get a bailout, if they've survived this long (and many have not), they've had to get back to reality.  They may have some false hopes here, but it's like a battered wife believing that if she loves her husband enough he'll stop hitting her.  Delusional yes, but somehow surviving.

Tue, 05/15/2012 - 10:12 | 2426764 Divided States ...
Divided States of America's picture

I think NAR is including dog house constructions into their figures...I just built a dog house last week.

Tue, 05/15/2012 - 10:22 | 2426844 jus_lite_reading
jus_lite_reading's picture

The NAR extrapolates home sales from the number of lawn chairs and BBQ grills sold at Home Depot

Tue, 05/15/2012 - 10:26 | 2426862 Bastiat
Bastiat's picture

You'll be able to rent that when the dog dies.

Tue, 05/15/2012 - 10:56 | 2427023 Bunga Bunga
Bunga Bunga's picture

Better buy a dog house now, before your dog is priced out forever. Dog houses never go down.

Tue, 05/15/2012 - 12:30 | 2427648 JohnKozac
JohnKozac's picture

"Dog houses never go down."


I was afraid of that. Maybe the ground hog out back will lease me part of his hole in coming years.

Tue, 05/15/2012 - 10:58 | 2427024 redpill
redpill's picture

This isn't NAR data, it's from NAHB, which is still a biased organization, but tends not to be quite as egregious.

Tue, 05/15/2012 - 11:18 | 2427106 Abitdodgie
Abitdodgie's picture

Every prison cell that is built is now counted as a single home that is where the "new" homes are been built, one of the fastest growing industries in Amerika.

Tue, 05/15/2012 - 10:11 | 2426768 TheSilverJournal
TheSilverJournal's picture

All while interest rates are below the inflation rate. Imagine when interest rates go higher...

Tue, 05/15/2012 - 10:11 | 2426774 krmont22
krmont22's picture

Why would anyone buy new with such a high foreclosure inventory?

Tue, 05/15/2012 - 10:31 | 2426886 toady
toady's picture

They are actually running ads here in AZ saying "why buy a rundown foreclosure when you can buy brand new for only 20-30k more"?

While the ad is running a guy in a "house" costume with "foreclousure" written on it stumbles threw a home depot crying.

Meanwhile, two of the 5 fourclosures in my 20 home development have been in the "shadow inventory" since 08/09, and a couple have gone in and out of foreclosure multiple times, and one was rented for a while and totally destroyed (doors broken in, including the garage door torn off, copper torn out, carpet torn out, drywall kicked in.

So my neighborhood is roughly 25% foreclosures, and a quick drive around town shows everywhere id the same, or worse, nut they keep building!

Tue, 05/15/2012 - 10:41 | 2426939 walküre
walküre's picture

Dude, time to put your shack on the market. Remember, the first offer is always the best!

Tue, 05/15/2012 - 10:13 | 2426775 cossack55
cossack55's picture

Visions of Drhousingbubbles article above.  Manipulate or delete all negative data.

Tue, 05/15/2012 - 10:13 | 2426783 cossack55
cossack55's picture

I think they are also using the trendy 350 sq. ft. portable house as permits, starts, and finals.

Tue, 05/15/2012 - 10:14 | 2426778 Cognitive Dissonance
Cognitive Dissonance's picture

Send in the (home building) clowns.


Tue, 05/15/2012 - 10:14 | 2426780 Dr. Engali
Dr. Engali's picture

Everybody is in denial. People's expectations have been lowered to the point where any economic activity points to a positive future.

Tue, 05/15/2012 - 10:36 | 2426914 DeadFred
DeadFred's picture

Manufactured good news isn't getting the lift that it used to. I'm guessing the crowd is starting to ignore the agitprop data and the algos are having difficulty with their jobs. There have been several prints recently that would have produced quite a rip once upon a time. Now it's hard to fight the people trying to get out the narrow exit doors. Maybe people aren't as dumb as I thought, of course I should reserve judgement on that.

Tue, 05/15/2012 - 10:55 | 2427017 SheepDog-One
SheepDog-One's picture

So pathetic that now if GDP comes in above negative, thats rolicking good news!

Tue, 05/15/2012 - 11:16 | 2427102 Cognitive Dissonance
Cognitive Dissonance's picture

Just double down (again) on the morphine. What doesn't kill you will just make you higher.

Tue, 05/15/2012 - 10:15 | 2426787 El Viejo
El Viejo's picture

They've been saying things will improve in Japan for 20 yrs.

Tue, 05/15/2012 - 10:16 | 2426789 Village Smithy
Village Smithy's picture

On a positive note the spike up on the number was as short lived as I've seen in awhile, someone's learning something out there.

What the NAHB is positive about is that someone is going to try to rescue the housing market with free money in an election year.

Tue, 05/15/2012 - 10:16 | 2426791 Antifaschistische
Antifaschistische's picture

When all objective measurements fail....why not measure "hope"....which is all you have when you THINK you're at the bottom.    think again...

Tue, 05/15/2012 - 10:16 | 2426798 Oldwood
Oldwood's picture

Its all about the "potential" that every peice of crap house out there has. I'm sure these professionals have been going to countless seminars, being told how it is all going to turn around any moment. Giving each other optimism awards!

Tue, 05/15/2012 - 10:17 | 2426806 Spastica Rex
Spastica Rex's picture

See: Obama DELIVERS!

He promised hope, and you got it!

Tue, 05/15/2012 - 10:26 | 2426858 malikai
malikai's picture

Yea, right in the ass.

Tue, 05/15/2012 - 10:57 | 2427025 SheepDog-One
SheepDog-One's picture

Dont say that too loud around Obama he'd get all excited Oooooo!!

Tue, 05/15/2012 - 11:10 | 2427081 malikai
malikai's picture

Oh yea I forgot. He's gay now. I hope he didn't hear me..

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