Since the October correction, growth stocks have been leading the charge, with homebuilder sector exchange traded funds among the best performers.
Over the past month, the SPDR S&P Homebuilders ETF (NYSEArca: XHB) gained 12.9% while the iShares U.S. Home Construction ETF (NYSEArca: ITB) increased 15.9%. In comparison, the S&P 500 index added 7.2% over the past month.
Homebuilder stocks have been solidifying their growth despite tepid action and absence of any real data or market volatility, reports Abigail Stevenson for CNBC.
Bolstering the housing sector, the stubbornly low interest rate environment has helped bring back home buyers in to the market. The yield on benchmark 10-year Treasuries has dipped almost 30 basis points to 2.36% since September, even as the Federal Reserve winds down its quantitative easing program. [Lower Down Payments Could Stimulate Homebuilders ETFs]
“The follow-through makes me believe that this last leg of interest rate declines, the ones you would least expect given what the Federal Reserve has been doing, seem as though they’re having a more positive impact on the economy than all of the Fed’s bond buying did,” Jim Cramer said on CNBC. [Low Mortgage Rates Could Reinforce Homebuilder ETFs]
Additionally, the housing market seems to be rebounding slowly. The Commerce Department said that September housing starts were up 17.8% year-over-year and rose 6.3% from August, reports Philip van Doorn for MarketWatch.
Looking ahead, housing market observers will be waiting on the Housing Market Index data on November 18 – the index provides an overview of present sales of new homes, sale of new homes expected in the next six months and traffic of prospective buyers in new homes. The new housing starts data for October will be released November 19 and existing home sales data are on November 20.