By Xavier Fontdegloria

Home-builder confidence in the U.S. rose in April even as builders continued to grapple with rising lumber prices and supply chain issues and consumers faced higher home prices due to a lack of inventory, according to a measure released Thursday from the National Association of Home Builders. Here are the report's main takeaways:

--The association's housing market index, which gauges the single-family housing market, increased to 83 in April, up one point from 82 in March. A number above 50 indicates that more builders view conditions as good than poor.

--The reading is broadly in line with economists' forecasts from The Wall Street Journal poll, which estimated the index to come in at 84.

--The indicator remains at high levels, after reaching an all-time high of 90 in November.

--"Despite strong buyer traffic, builders continue to face challenges to add much needed housing supply to the market," NAHB Chairman Chuck Fowke said. The supply chain for residential construction is tight, particularly regarding the cost and availability of lumber, appliances and other building materials, he said.

--"While mortgage interest rates have trended higher since February and home prices continue to outstrip inflation, housing demand appears to be unwavering for now as buyer traffic reached its highest level since November," NAHB Chief Economist Robert Dietz said.

--The HMI indexes posted mixed figures in April compared with the previous month. The index gauging current sales conditions increased one point to 88, the component measuring sales expectations in the next six months fell two points to 81, and the measure charting traffic of prospective buyers climbed three points to 75.


Write to Xavier Fontdegloria at


(END) Dow Jones Newswires

April 15, 2021 10:14 ET (14:14 GMT)

Copyright (c) 2021 Dow Jones & Company, Inc.