U.S. home builders started construction on many more residencies than expected in May. The Commerce Department reported that housing starts increased by 17%. Building permits also rose 4% -- significantly more than expected. The increase in starts was punctuated by a 29% surge in the West.
As this recovery begins we've continued to look to strength in the housing sector as an indication of how strong this recovery will be. Sales of new and existing homes increased in April and buyers signing contracts to buy previously owned homes has now risen for three straight months.
Home prices are now at record affordability levels across the country. First time home buyers are also rushing to take advantage of the $8,000 tax credit included in Obama's stimulus plan.
When all you read is gloom, turn here for a much different perspective.