U.S. Homebuilder Confidence, Sales Outlook Slip in January

(AP) -
A home for sale in Andover, Mass. (AP Photo/Elise Amendola, File)

U.S. homebuilders are feeling slightly less confident this month about their sales prospects, a pullback from December when builders’ confidence reached the highest level in 11 years.

The decline in builder confidence comes amid heightened concerns about how rising mortgage rates could affect sales this year.

The National Association of Home Builders/Wells Fargo builder sentiment index released Tuesday fell to 67 this month. That’s down two points from a revised reading of 69 in December.

Readings above 50 indicate more builders view sales conditions as good rather than poor. The index has been above 60 since September.

Builders’ view of sales now and over the next six months also fell, as did a gauge of traffic by prospective buyers.